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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Em is a Gem !!??
This novel - after a little adjustment to the style of writing if not accustomed to Austen - makes a marvellous read ! Emma is feisty, warm, witty and mischievous - but not without fault. One finds oneself caught up in the characterisation of Emma and quickly realise that the themes of pride, perception and prejudice ( Austen's speciality ) run throughout.

The...
Published on 6 Feb 2007 by Clinty

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars This is an abridged version: website description not clear enough.
I passed this on to a friend as I wanted an unabridged version. The website description should make it clearer that this is abridged.
Published 10 months ago by Mrs Hilary F Brown


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding edition of this classic novel, 23 Oct 2013
By 
Thomas Pots "T Pots" (England) - See all my reviews
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This has to be the definitive edition of this novel. It is certainly the one to buy if you are studying the novel for exams. This edition includes a lengthy introduction, textual notes, bibliography for additional research, chronology of the novel, various appendices, and a host of explanatory notes. The extras are what give this edition the edge over the competition. It's a very nice publication, as are all in the Oxford World's Classics range.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful edition, 14 Aug 2011
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This review is from: Emma (Fine Edition) (Hardcover)
This is a reworking of the timeless classic. Stunning cover which truly complements the text. The novel is a wonderful insight into social mores in Austen's England. In many ways it is a Bildungsroman as Emma becomes self aware about how to treat others and finds love along the way. My favourite Austen.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Novel, 1 Aug 2010
Emma is a bit of a snob and interferes too much with matters that should not concern her. This leads to some highly amusing situations. But she's also very intelligent, fundamentally kind-hearted, and capable of reform. The critics often say that one sign of a good novel is that the main character develops & improves within the course of the novel. Austen handles this aspect superbly well, showing how influence and situation leads to vast improvements in Emma. The surrounding characters are also well drawn, highlights are her soft-hearted and soft-headed father, and the almost slightly too good to be true male lead. By the way, I'm an old bloke so, guys, don't dismiss dismiss this as for "women only". It's a novel of genius by one of the greatest writers in history.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's such a happiness, 16 May 2010
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
"Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition" is a suitable heroine for Jane Austen's lightest, frothiest novel. While "Emma" is not nearly as dramatic as Austen's other works, it is an enchanting little comedy of manners in which a young woman with the best intentions meddles in others' love lives... with only the faintest idea of how people (including herself) actually feel.

After matchmaking her governess Miss Taylor, Emma Woodhouse considers herself a natural at bringing people together. She soon becomes best buddies with Harriet, a sweet (if not very bright) young woman who is the "natural daughter of somebody." Emma becomes determined to pair Harriet with someone deserving of her (even derailing a gentleman-farmer's proposal), such as the smarmy, charming Mr. Elton. When Emma's latest attempt falls apart, she finds that getting someone OUT of love is a lot harder than getting them INTO it.

At around the same time, two people that Emma has heard about her entire life have arrived -- the charming Frank Churchill, and the reserved, remote Miss Jane Fairfax (along with rumors of a married man's interest in her). Emma begins a flirtatious friendship with Frank, but for some reason is unable to get close to Miss Fairfax. As she navigates the secrets and rumors of other people's romantic lives, she begins to realize who she has been in love with all along.

Out of all Jane Austen's books, "Emma" is the frothiest and lightest -- there aren't any major scandals, lives ruined, reputations destroyed, financial crises or sinister schemes. There's just a little intertwined circle of people living in a country village, and how one young woman tries to rearrange them in the manner that she genuinely thinks is best. Of course, in true comedy style everything goes completely wrong.

And despite the formal stuffiness of the time, Austen wrote the book in a languidly sunny style, threading it with a complex web of cleverly orchestrated rumors and romantic tangles. There's some moments of seriousness (such as Emma's rudeness to kind, silly Miss Bates), but it's also laced with some entertaining dialogue ("Silly things do cease to be silly if they are done by sensible people in an impudent way") and barbed humor (the ridiculous and obnoxious Mrs. Elton).

Modern readers tend to be squicked by the idea of Emma falling for a guy who's known her literally all her life, but Austen makes the subtle relationship between Knightley and Emma one of affectionate bickering and beautiful romantic moments ("If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am. You hear nothing but truth from me").

Emma is a character who is likable despite her flaws -- she's young, bright, well-meaning and assured of her own knowledge of the human heart, but also naive and sometimes snobbish. She flits around like a clumsy butterfly, but is endearing even when she screws up. Mr. Knightley is her ideal counterpoint, being enjoyably blunt and sharp-witted at all times. And there's a fairly colorful supporting cast -- Emma's neurotic but sweet dad, her kindly ex-governess, the charming Frank, the fluttery Miss Bates, and even the smarmy Mr. Elton and his bulldozing wife.

"Emma" is the most lightweight and openly comedic of all Jane Austen's novels, with a likable (if clueless) heroine and a multilayered plot full of half-hidden feelings. A lesser delight.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Listening, 13 Nov 2009
By 
Damaskcat (UK) - See all my reviews
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I read Jane Austen's 'Emma' more than 30 years ago and I was pleased to revisit it with this 12 disc audio book. Jenny Agutter's voice is absolutely perfect for the book and she uses a slightly different tone of voice for all the characters which makes it more interesting. I found by listening to the book being read I actually picked up on a lot of the nuances I missed when I first read it.

Emma starts off as spoilt and headstrong but changes gradually throughout the book. I found I picked up far more on the clues which are there about Frank Churchill's relationship with Jane Fairfax and about Mrs Weston's baby which I remember being surprised by when I was reading the book.

This is very relaxing listening and I would recommend it to anyone who perhaps has not appreciated Jane Austen before as it is an easy way to get into her books. Don't be put off by the fact there are 12 discs as I found the time spent listening to them really went quickly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful edition of this classic, 28 Oct 2009
By 
S. A. Gregory Cox (Bristol, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I was delighted when I received this edition of Emma. I did not want a paperback, maybe because in our house, when I was a child, the classics were always in robust hardback editions. The experience of reading them was enhanced by lovely bindings that were good to handle. This edition completely holds its own with these old volumes. It is beautifully produced with clothbound hard covers under its pleasingly designed wrapper, good quality paper, a very readable typeface (larger than you usually get in paperback editions)and a bookmark ribbon. It will stand very well alongside those old volumes and, like them, encourage reading and re-reading of Jane Austen's classic.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emma, a masterpiece & nice supplemental material, 7 Mar 2010
For me, reading Jane Austen's novel EMMA is a delight. However, not all readers have been in agreement with me over the years including Jane Austen herself who warned her family before publication "I am going to take a heroine whom no-one but myself will much like." She was of course making fun of herself in her own satirical way; - her critics on the other hand, were quite serious. When the book was published in 1815, Austen sent a copy to her contemporary author Maria Edgeworth who gave up reading the novel after the first volume, passing it on to friend and complaining, "There is no story in it." Others had mixed feelings offering both praise and blame for its focus on the ordinary details of a few families in a country village. One important advocate of Emma was Sir Walter Scott, whose essay published in the Quarterly Review of 1815 represents the most important criticism on Austen's writing during her lifetime. Even though the review was published anonymously, she must have been quite giddy when the reviewer heralded her EMMA as a `new style of novel' designed to `suit modern times'. Heady stuff to be sure. When it was later learned that Scott had contributed the review, it would placed Jane Austen in a whole other league of writers.

EMMA can be enjoyed on different levels, and for pure humour and witty dialogue it may reign as Austen's supreme triumph. Just Google quotes from Emma and you might agree that it has the best bon mots of any of her novels. Modern critics claim it as her masterpiece, and I do not doubt it. PRIDE AND PREJUDICE may be the most beloved and well know of her works, but EMMA represents Austen at the height of her writing skill and power as a story teller. Like some of Austen's contemporaries, the modern reader might find challenges in its minutiae and supposed lack of story. Not to worry. There are many sources available to assist in understanding Jane Austen's subtle and often witty dialogue, her unique characterizations, and help place the novel in historical context.

One source to consider is the new 2008 edition of EMMA, by Oxford World's Classics. Recently revised in 2003, this re-issue contains the same supplemental and textual material with a newly designed cover. For a reader seeking a medium level of support to help them along in their understanding you will be happy to find a thoughtful 23 page introduction by associate Professor of English and Women's Studies Adela Pinch of the University of Michigan. The essay contains a brief introduction, and segments on Shopping and Suburbia, Narrative Voices: Gossip and the Individual, The Politics of Knowledge, and EMMA: Much Ado About Nothing?. Her emphasis is on understanding Austen's choice of writing about the ordinary and extraordinary aspects of the lives of its heroine Emma Woodhouse and her circle of family and friends in Highbury, a small English village in which she sets about to match make for all of its singletons blundering hilariously along the way. I particularly appreciated Prof. Pinch's positive comments throughout the essay.

"Austen makes voices stick in the mind through her use of free indirect discourse, which makes character's voice seem indelible, capable of soaking into other beings. But she also uses the same technique for representing thought. Her cultivation of this mode of representing her heroines' minds has made her novels crucial to the history of the English novel, markers of a movement when the novel as a literary genre perfects its inward turn, and begins to claim human psychology as its territory. Above all it creates the feeling of intimacy with her heroines that many readers prize." Page xvii-xviii

If I may be so bold and interject as the everyman Austen reader for a moment, parts of this essay are scholarly and touch on areas beyond my immediate understanding, especially when she delves into the philosophical and psychological pedantry. For the most part, Prof. Pinch's essay is written in accessible language and is reverent and admiring to the author and the heroine. I found this outlook refreshing since the heroine Emma, and the novel EMMA have received some criticisms for their shortcomings over the centuries. The novel is about so much more than the "no story" that Maria Edgeworth hastily condemned it to be. I especially adore Emma's little friend Harriet Smith and think her much maligned in the recent movie adaptations, and well - can there ever be enough praise bestowed upon Mrs. Elton? She is comedic genius and worthy of a nomination to the literary comedy hall of fame.

Professor Pinch has also supplied the helpful explanatory notes throughout the text which are numbered on the page allowing the reader to refer to the back of the book for explanation. Honestly, I prefer them to be footnoted at the bottom of the page instead of riffling back and forth, but that is a quibble on convenience. The remainder of the supplemental material; Biography of Jane Austen, Note on the Text, Select Bibliography, Chronology of Jane Austen, Appendix A: Rank and Social Status, and Appendix B: Dancing are repeated throughout the other Jane Austen editions in this series.

This Oxford edition is a sweet little volume at an incredible price if you are in the market for a middlin amount of supplemental material from reputable sources containing an authorative text edited for the modern reader. If you enjoy matchless wit and irony, unforgettable characters, and a unique story that turns the everyday imaginings of a young Georgian era woman into an extraordinary story filled with a comedy of manners and romance, then take note; - Miss Emma Woodhouse commands you to purchase this book immediately!

Laurel Ann, Austenprose
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful binding, 28 Mar 2014
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In the age of kindle I still love books like this. It is well bound, the paper quality is good and the print size is slightly bigger than the average. Each of the Austen's has a themed design connected with story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable., 22 Feb 2014
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I bought this as a Christmas present for my 89 year old Gran. Her eyes aren't as good as they use to be and she struggles reading books, so relaxing and listening to the cd's brings much joy to her.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars This is an abridged version: website description not clear enough., 9 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Emma (Classic Fiction) (Audio CD)
I passed this on to a friend as I wanted an unabridged version. The website description should make it clearer that this is abridged.
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Emma (Classic Fiction)
Emma (Classic Fiction) by Jane Austen (Audio CD - 31 Mar 1996)
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