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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, sumptuous and satisfying
Just when I thought I had more editions of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE than I should ever own up to, I will freely admit to just one more. After all, what Janeite could resist this tempting package? An unabridged first edition text; Annotations by an Austen scholar; Color illustrations; Over-sized coffee table format; Extensive introduction; And, supplemental material - all...
Published on 24 Sep 2010 by Laurel Ann

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not what I expected
I bought this to the publication mark the 200th anniversary of P&P, thinknig it was a special edition - see the title. In fact it is just the regular text with no intro, nothing to note the anniversary, just a regular edition of P&P with a smart cover. I'd say this is marketed under false pretences. I gave it away to a friend, then bought a proper anniversary editon from...
Published 13 months ago by David Hillson


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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, sumptuous and satisfying, 24 Sep 2010
Just when I thought I had more editions of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE than I should ever own up to, I will freely admit to just one more. After all, what Janeite could resist this tempting package? An unabridged first edition text; Annotations by an Austen scholar; Color illustrations; Over-sized coffee table format; Extensive introduction; And, supplemental material - all pulled together in a beautifully designed interior and stunning cover. *swoon* Where are my aromatic vinegars?

This new annotated edition appeals to modern readers on many levels beyond being a pretty package of a beloved classic. Austen is renowned for her witty dialogue and finely drawn characters, but not for her elaborate physical descriptions or historical context. When PRIDE AND PREJUDICE was originally published in 1813, this brevity was accessible to her contemporary readers who assumed the inferences, but after close to two hundred years words have changed their meaning, insinuations and subtle asides have become fuzzy, and cultural differences from Regency to twenty-first century are worlds apart. Anyone can read PRIDE AND PREJUDICE and follow the narrative, but it is so much more enjoyable if you can read it on an expanded level understanding it in social, cultural and historical context. Editor Patricia Meyer Spacks has not only added extensive notes on plot, characters, events, history, culture and critical analysis from a vast array of Austen and literary scholars, but added her own personal insights and observations from years of reading Austen and her experience as a college professor. From shoe roses to Fordyces Sermons to military floggings to the 19th-century meaning of condescension, readers will be informed and enlighted on every aspect related to the novel, the author and her times. In a nut shell, she has vetted great resources, gathered nuggets of knowledge and placed them at our feet.

As with all of Austen's characters, this new annotated edition of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE has its own charms, "frailties, foibles and follies." Weighing in at over three pounds, and encompassing 464 pages of unabridged text and fine print margin notes, this book easily reigns as the most all-inclusive and well-researched edition of Jane Austen's masterpiece that I have ever encountered. Considering that the elaborate annotation classifies it as a reference work in addition to a full text, it is quite puzzling that it lacks an index. In addition, the illustrations are expertly selected but sadly lost some of their refinement in the printing process, coming across dark and murky in places. However, I was pleased to see a list of further reading and illustration credits listed in the back of the book to encourage readers to "add something more substantial, in the improvement of [their] minds by extensive reading."

Beautiful, sumptuous and satisfying, PRIDE AND PREJUDICE: AN ANNOTATED EDITION is a monumental achievement that should be on the top of your holiday wish list and considered one of few editions available to be esteemed truly accomplished.

Laurel Ann, Austenprose
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good - but not for the specialist, 12 Feb 2011
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This is a beautifully produced book - though, at a size when open of 20 inches by 10 inches, it's a bit unwieldy for anybody used to handling paperbacks (or a Kindle!). The period illustrations are well chosen and excellently reproduced.

I suppose the main reason for buying the book would be the notes, and how valuable these will be to you will depend on your background and experience of reading JA. My impression is that they are pitched more at American than at English readers, and at college students rather than JA aficionados.

The notes of of two kinds. Many are simple explanations of the meanings of words, and I'm surprised by the sheer number of these. For example, how many readers need to be told that 'during the chief of the day' means 'during the main part of the day'? Or '(Lydia) .. had high animal spirits and a sort of natural self-consequence' means that she had 'great natural good humour' and 'natural self-importance'?

Other notes deal very well with the social background to the book, and provide a commentary on the characters and their relationships, but they are not terribly profound, and they didn't often give me any really striking new insights or information. Indeed, they sometime give the impression that they're intended for people for whom life in early 19th century England is utterly alien - we might be talking about the social relations between little green men and little green women on an Earth-like, but far distant, planet! On the other hand, some of the notes which I found most thought-provoking refer to other contemporary writing, especially JA's other novels and letters.

In a word, if you are already a JA enthusiast and know P&P really well, this book may be something of a disappointment; you may feel that it's not worth the, quite high, price. On the other hand, if JA is new to you, and, having seen a TV or film production of P&P, you want to read the original, this could be a very good way in.

Sorry if any of the above seems patronising. That wasn't the intention; the bottom line, of course, is that it's a matter of 'courses for horses'.
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90 of 97 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pride and Prejudice, 24 July 2011
This review is from: Pride and Prejudice (Kindle Edition)
I first bought this book in its Kindle version a week ago. To be honest, I wasn't really that keen on it. I was only persuaded to read it because I was new to the Kindle and didn't yet have a lot of books to read on it. I expected it to be tedious. I didn't find the title promising, for one thing. And for another, I had an not entirely unreasonable feeling that, since this is rather an old book, it would contain really hard language and strange words. I started off the first couple of chapters with an ill grace, but soon I was captivated by Jane Austen's excellently woven plot about family and relationships. I simply couldn't stop reading, and I was so absorbed in it that I lost track of the time. It is now my most favorite book, which is actually quite surprising because I had never imagined that anything could beat the Harry Potter novels. Also, the Kindle format is very good, with an active table of contents and everything.

The rough outline of the story is about high-ranking Mr. Darcy, who has a massive amount of wealth and middle-class Elizabeth Bennett, who has a determined prejudice against Mr. Darcy because of his pride. As the passion between them grows,it becomes more and more unlikely of their being united. I also really like the way it is all so realistic and makes you believe every word of the book. I won't go into the plot to spoil the surprise.

I've really enjoyed this book...more than anything that I have ever read before, and I hope you will read and enjoy it too. I really recommend this book to anyone over ten years of age. It is a great read... Unmissable!!
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62 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top of the class, 25 May 2004
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I had the terrible misfortune to go to a school that insisted on making us read the most miserable old books for our English courses. For years afterwards I suffered under the assumption that anything labelled as a "classic" was certain to be grim and impenetrable, and I stuck to reading relatively modern novels.
I bless the day when I wrestled with my prejudice and picked up a friend's anthology of Austen's novels. I had heard plenty about Austen's "social observation" before. It's an unfortunate phrase, because it suggested to me that her writing would be interesting but a bit dry and academic. Not a bit of it.
All of the Austen novels I've read so far have been good, but Pride and Prejudice is head and shoulders above the rest and ranks as one of the most entertaining books I have ever read. The characters are fabulously drawn, from the odious Mr Collins and the vacuous Lydia to the blithe Mr Bingley and the truly heroic Lizzie Bennett. The book is wonderfully constructed, going through what seems to be fairly straightforward plot development before Mr Darcy's proposal puts the main protagonists through a second half full of suspense and heart-felt self-criticism. Austen's writing is clear, concise, full of acute observations and coloured with a wonderful sense of humour.
While the whole book is extremely satisfying, it is Lizzie who steals the show. Much has been made of Mr Darcy's sex appeal, but most red-blooded men would find hard to deny that Miss Bennett is a deeply fascinating and attractive woman. She is fabulous throughout, and the story is peppered with moments where she delivers some truly marvelous dialogue, not least her reaction to Mr Darcy's proposal and her interview with Lady Catherine (which almost had me cheering out loud on the train into work). Strong-willed, intelligent, good-looking and cool under pressure; what a woman.
A fabulous book. How I wish I had read it years ago.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not what I expected, 2 Mar 2013
By 
David Hillson (Petersfield, Hants, UK) - See all my reviews
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I bought this to the publication mark the 200th anniversary of P&P, thinknig it was a special edition - see the title. In fact it is just the regular text with no intro, nothing to note the anniversary, just a regular edition of P&P with a smart cover. I'd say this is marketed under false pretences. I gave it away to a friend, then bought a proper anniversary editon from the online Jane Austen Society website.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Austen's Norton, 30 Sep 2011
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RR Waller "ISeneca" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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SAFE READING - NO SPOILERS

Norton Critical Editions are excellent publications and a wonderful series for any students, covering plays and novels. There is a typical format - text first, notes, etc afterwards.

After a brief editor's note, there is the text, over two-hundred pages. It is a story of Regency England but for details see other reviews.

The text is followed by detailed notes on Austen's and other backgrounds, Cultural and Historical Contexts, and a lengthy (two-hundred pages) critical section including a wide range of critics. It is "only" a paperback but it is well produced and solidly glued. For the serious student of Advanced Level or above, this is an essential for Jane Austen.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Annotated Pride and Prejudice, 20 Mar 2011
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An excellent book. Although slightly irritating at times as it provides some seemingly obvious information (perhaps for the benefit of American readers whose current use of language, I have to assume from some of the notes, must be much further removed from the English of Jane Austen's time) it provided lots of insight into the wider cultural context of the novel; I didn't realise quite how feminist Austen's book is, despite appearing to be an old-fashioned romance. It has prompted further re-reading of other Austen novels and wider reading in Claire Tomalin's excellent biography of Jane Austen. Fascinating and highly recommmended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just the right voice, 17 Feb 2010
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Damaskcat (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Pride and Prejudice (Audio CD)
Pride and Prejudice is probably one of the liveliest of Jane Austen's novels. It does make serious points about marrying for financial reasons - Charlotte Lucas and Mr Collins; and marrying for love - Lydia Bennett and George Wickham. Neither union is terribly satisfactory because of the people involved. There are also useful lessons about the disadvantages of both pride and prejudice in the person of Darcy and Elizabeth - both of whom grow and develop throughout the story.

The book is full of memorable characters - the prosy Mr Collins a clergyman everyone loves to hate; Lady Catherine De Burgh who is more proud even than Darcy himself. The easy going Mr Bennett who realises by the end of the book that being easy going is not always the best thing to be and his apparently silly wife who nonetheless understands a great deal about the ways of the world.

This audio edition of the book is well produced and Irene Sutcliffe's voice is perfect for it. She brings to life the various characters with just the right emphasis in the dialogue so that none of the nuances are missed by the listener. I certainly picked up things I had not noticed before when reading the text such as how very nice the Gardiners are and how much they have the best interests of their nieces at heart. Very entertaining and relaxing listening.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars P&P, 5 May 2007
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Gemma Linden "Gemz" (belfast, northern ireland) - See all my reviews
Without a doubt the best book i have ever read. If you have seen the film starring keira knightley I personally feel it is a poor reflection of the book itself. The film seemed so serious all the way through when in actual fact the book is fun and makes you smile throughout. Do not let that film discourage you as the only good adaptation of it was the drama on bbc years ago. I recommend it to anyone as it is an excellent book that you will not want to put down as you will constantly wonder will they or won't they where Elizabeth and Mr Darcy are concerned. A very modern book for its time with Elizabeth a headstrong young woman who loves her family and thinks Mr Darcy is a snob and Mr Darcy who falls in love with Elizabeth but must banish her opinion of him. Deffinetly buy it you won't be disapointed.
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46 of 50 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Why is the free version abridged? : (, 26 Jun 2012
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This review is from: Pride and Prejudice (Kindle Edition)
Yes, I know this is free so you can't expect much from a free book but why can't we have the full text? This is my favourite classic and I was looking forward to reading the e-version but feel I have been cheated. One of my reasons for getting a Kindle was the promise of free classics and now I'm finding it be a promise with hidden terms and conditions.
I'm sure this version is great for someone who has not read the book but many of us have. I knew by the first page something was missing from this version. Just be careful which edition you download!
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Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
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