Tag Archives: Jane Austen

Pulp Fictioning the Classics

Tess Pulp Fiction Crusoe Pulp Fiction P&P pulp fiction Gatsby Pulp Fiction

Just thought I’d share:

Indie Publisher Oldcastle Books is reissuing literary classics with awesome Pulp Fiction covers and hilarious taglines. Their first tranch of titles include Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, F. Scott Fitzgerald‘s perenial classic The Great Gatsby, Hardy’s lamentful Tess of The D’Urbervilles, Daniel Defoe‘s Robinson Crusoe, as well as The Hound of the Baskervilles and Wuthering Heights. Perfect for the literary enthusiast with a wry sense of humour.

The illustrations are the handiwork of artist David Mann, and designed by Elsa Mathern.

Oldcastle Books are also challenging fans to try to come up with good taglines themselves. The submitted taglines might even be used in the Oldcastle versions – but be warned, even if they use your tagline, you won’t get a piece of the action, only the glory.

I’ve recently compromised the space dedicated to literary classics in my ever expanding library (read: several overstuffed shelves). I have *shock horror* sold off all my well-thumbed wordsworth editions in favour of compiling all of the out of copyright classics onto ebook format, downloaded from Project Gutenberg. Not as pretty or satisfying to look at, but available at the click of a button and saves so much on space. There  are so many great editions of classics coming out, that, between the Oldcastle versions and also the beautifully cloth bound Penguin English Library editions, I’m rethinking my electronic edition compromise.

I’ve included a lovely little video on the Penguin English Library (non-cloth bound) editions below… a little trippy but way cute… ahhh how I love books…

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Not So Fairy Tale Romances

Stupid cupid“Happy Hallmark Day!” My dry humoured BF greeted me this morning. “And next month on 14 March we can celebrate [the much lauded] Steak and BJ Day.” Colour me romanced.

Fairytale Romance?

With the commonly covered folklore-ish topics in this blog, I find myself wondering when the term “Fairytale Romance” first originated. The term really does seem like a misnomer. The first fairytale-esk romances that pop into my head:

  • Little Mermaid becomes human for the man she loves, but he doesn’t return her feelings so she turns into foam [dies] – romance failed 
  • Snow White and Sleeping Beauty both appeared as if dead, and get kissed by necropheliac princes.  In fact,  in one of the earlier Sleeping Beauty stories, the prince sleeps with [rapes] Sleeping Beauty, and through Sleeping Beauty’s resultant children she awakens – romance failed
  • the so-called Frog Princess hated the frog and threw him against a wall breaking the spell, returning him to a prince. The [masochistic] prince then asks the petulant girl to marry him (no kissing the frog in the original story) – romance failed

There are some tales that have some of the ingredients of a great love story, but would you really want to be taken captive by a hideous beast and who asked you to marry him every day from the first day you meet (Stockholm syndrome anyone?), or want a prince charming who only wanted you for your great dress sense, and wouldn’t recognise you without it (Cinderella). None of this really fits the picture of the so-called fairytale romance.

*Late addition 15.Feb.13* Also, on Beauty and the Beast, it’s occurred to me that Belle (aka Beauty) only accepts the Beast’s marriage proposal after he turns into a prince (before that she only loves him as a friend) Now, as the prince, would you really want a woman who could only accept you for your looks?

Anti-Valentine Reads

In any case, on this very fine [alleged] day of love, We Love this Book has come up with 5 anti-Valentines reads. Their list is a little morose, so I’ve compiled my own (adding these to my expansive reading list, re-reading the bunny suicides is never a chore…):

Sophus’ 5 Anti-Valentine Reads:

  1.  American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis: an exploration of the incomprehensible depths of madness and the physical and sexual violence in our time or any other.
  2. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith (and *ahem* Jane Austen): It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains. Nom Nom Nom.
  3. Wedlock by Wendy Moore: How Georgian Britain’s Worst Husband Met His Match – a tale of divorce, violence, madness and scandal (see also How to Create the Perfect Wife)
  4. The Book of Bunny Suicides by Andy Riley: This is dark humour at its best – does what it says on the tin.
  5. The Road by Cormac McCarthy:  a post-apocolyptic tale of a journey across a landscape blasted by an unspecified cataclysm that has destroyed most of civilization and, in the intervening years, almost all life on Earth. Cheery.

Any other suggestions?