Pride, prejudice and pleasure

Jo Francis
Monday, January 28, 2013

It’s a day for doffing one’s bonnet in homage to Jane Austen, and the enduring appeal of her most popular novel, Pride and Prejudice. The book is 200 years young today. I shall be dusting off my copy and readying myself for a re-read. Possibly with the Colin Firth/Jennifer Ehle DVD of same (the best adaptation to my mind) on in the background. And a hat tip goes to The Atlantic Wire for this entertaining round-up of various cover designs and bindings over the years. The book is out of copyright and easily available as a free download for e-readers. And yet, according to this BBC article, some 50,000 copies of the actual, proper book are still sold every year in the UK. Marvellous. It is incumbent upon any writer tackling the topic of Austen and P&P to use the phrase “it is a truth universally acknowledged” somewhere in the piece. So here goes. It is a truth universally acknowledged that printed books will not be wiped out by e-versions. In another 200 years’ time people will still be in love with both Mr Darcy and their dog-eared (or pristine Folio Society) copies of this book.


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