Sunday, June 23, 2013

Via The Telegraph & Argus we find out that the so-called National Picnic Week (which ends today, by the way) has chosen Top Withins (Number 15) for their Britain's Top Picnic Sites list:
We’re so excited to announce our list of the best picnic locations in the country. Picnics are loved by British people because of our desire to get out into the Great Outdoors and the British countryside never fails to provide a stunning location for you to tuck into your sandwiches.
I’ve been lucky enough to visit a number of these stunning locations and I really can’t recommend them highly enough. What could be better? Sunshine, sarnies and scenery – the perfect combination!" Phil Browne - National Picnic Week organiser 
Post-noon recommends places to visit in North Ireland:
For literature lovers, head to the Brontë trail, where the father of the Brontë sisters preached.
Brontë trail is ok, but we are afraid Patrick Brontë doesn't preached very much in Ireland as it was ordered in Cambridge when he was already in the UK.

Asheville Citizen-Times reviews Dark Companion by Marta Acosta:
Since its publication in 1847, Charlotte Brontë’s classic “Jane Eyre” has inspired numerous novels, including Marta Acosta’s modern-day story, “Dark Companion.
The novel is irresistible from the start. The narrator, 16-year-old Jane, hooks readers with this opening line: “On the night that I die, a storm rages …”
As the story unfolds, readers learn that Jane has spent most of her childhood in inner-city foster homes. Jane knows that the only way out of her tragic circumstances is by getting a good education. (...) “Dark Companion” is the perfect modern Gothic novel. Like “Jane Eyre,” “Dark Companion” has romance, suspense, secret passages and identities, maybe/maybe not-ghosts, and a cataclysmic fire in an old ancestral hall. “Dark Companion” is a fun, spooky read. (Jennifer Prince)
The Telegraph makes a heated vindication of the North as centre of artistic creation:
This means some if not most of the most dramatic and world changing moments of artistic, scientific and culture innovation in British history have originated in the north. Take from the rest of the country what began, and thrived, in the north – the novels of Laurence Sterne, Lewis Carroll, the Brontës, Malcolm Lowry, Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe of York, the machines of Arkwright, the experimentation of Thomas De Quincey, the poetry of Wordsworth, Hughes and Larkin, the engineering of the Stephensons, the social theories of Marx and Engels, the campaigning of Cobden and the Pankhursts, the Yorkshire of Hockney, Hepworth and Henry Moore, the wit of Alan Bennett, the computer vision of Alan Turing, the Jodrell Bank of Bernard Lovell, the broadcasting of Granada, the Coronation Street of Tony Warren, the pop music of Liverpool, and then Manchester, the opening ceremony of Danny Boyle – and the nation shrinks. (Paul Morley)
The Battle of the £5 notes continues in the British Press:
But the Bank refused to reveal who the woman was, saying it might 'prejudice' the selection process for people to appear on the next round of banknotes.
Although the Bank maintains its silence over the identity of the woman it chose as a 'contingency', it is expected she hails from a list of 83 influential women chosen by the public,The Times reported.
The list includes Charlotte Brontë, Jane Austen and Emmeline Pankhurst. (Rosie Taylor in Daily Mail)
Or The Times advocating directly for Jane Austen in an opinion article .

Also in The Times we find our beloved AA Gill reviewing The White Queen:
The first thing that must be said on behalf of this historical adaptation is that it isn't the long 19th centruy or Jacobethan, and it isn't written by the Austen-Brontës or Andrew Davies.
Barbara Allen in The Observer describes different forms of abuse:
The abused are great at denial mechanisms – everything from "He doesn't mean it" to "He's under pressure at work", to what I'd term the "Heathcliff" (a couple so passionate there are bound to be fireworks). 
The Dallas Morning News reviews Lexicon by Max Barry:
In Lexicon, Max Barry creates a world not unlike ours, but with a hidden dimension of power wielded by word-magicians known as poets. Candidates, selected because they are “good with words,” are recruited as young people and trained at a special academy in the Virginia suburbs of Washington. This school is never named, but all of the teachers have the names of famous poets, such as T.S. Eliot and Charlotte Brontë. (Joyce Sáenz Harris)
The Star (Malaysia) talks about Malorie Blackman, Britain’s newest children’s laureate:
Blackman is also the first black laureate and a forceful advocate for black and ethnic minority children’s needs and rights. As a child, Blackman loved myths, legends and fairytales, and comics such asBunty, Judy and Jinty. She read Elinor Brent-Dyer’s chalet school stories, Joyce Lankester Brisley’s Milly-Molly-Mandy series and later Agatha Christie, Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca. She loved them all, she says, “but I was very aware that I was not in the books I was reading. I still remember feeling I was totally invisible in the world of literature”. (Susanna Rustin)
Sarah T. Schwab contributes to the Lauren Sandler debate and uses Emily and Anne Brontë as examples of writers with no offspring in The Observer (NY); Bookie Mee and Beauty Vintage (in Portuguese) post about Jane Eyre; Rosie's Period Journal posts a photo gallery of Jane Eyre 1997.


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