Sunday 28 March 2010


Project 24 - #7

The eagle-eyed among you will have spotted that Project24 is up to #7 already, which takes me to halfway through April (apparently the cruellest month... well, we'll see). But the seventh book is one I've wanted for about eight years and, though I bought it online rather than finding it serendipitously, I think you'll excuse the purchase when you know what it is:

Yes, two of my favourite authors, combined in one beautiful book: Miss Elizabeth Bennet by AA Milne. I have actually seen the play performed - by an am-dram society in a village with the wonderful name of Blewbury, back in 2004 - and read it in 2008 or thereabouts. But this was one I needed to own...

And it got me thinking. I'm going to make you be very interactive this week, as I want more ideas. AA Milne dramatising Jane Austen is more or less a dream come true for me - but what other author combinations would delight and amuse you?

I've had a little think. I'd love to read Jane Austen's novelisation of Much Ado About Nothing. And I think Tove Jansson could turn 'Kubla Khan' into an atmospheric novella. Do any of you know the beautiful Nancy Griffith song 'Love at the Five and Dime'? I'd love EM Delafield to turn that into a novel.

As you can see, whimsy is the name of the game - let me know your suggestions of authors adapting things, as crazy or as plausible as you like. Let time, geography, language be no object... I'm looking forward to hearing what you come up with.


  1. Wow, this absolutely looks worthy of being one of the 24! I've just finished reading Jane's Fame by Claire Harman and, prior to yesterday, I had no idea that Milne had even written this play.

    Love the idea of a Much Ado About Nothing novelization by Austen. Am not feeling witty enough to participate in this game myself, but I'll look forward to see the other answers.

  2. Yesterday, I picked up a paperback at a used bookstore: _Rereadings_, edited by Anne Fadiman. I've read one chapter, the second one - led there by the title, one that reminded me of YOU, so I read it in your honor! :-)

    "Relics of Saint Katherine" by Patricia Hampl. It is as 'new' - had not been read - I'm hesitant to do my usual creasing(!) - a $13 book for $4.

    I can't say much for the author's writing (too much like my ever present parentheses!!) - but, it involved her intro. to Katherine Mansfield, her cult-like devotion, admiration, copying, etc. of anything related to her.

    I read this chapter looking for anything new I might not have read before (nothing). Her intro. happened to be two books, letters & journal, given to her on her first meeting with her boyfriend's mother (also a KM devotee). Anyway, I thought of you all the way through... :-)

  3. Interesting... I have never heard of AAM's Miss Elizabeth Bennet - although I have just read and reviewed his wonderful "Two People" - and enjoyed reading your review of a year or so ago. It seems as though AAM was incredibly versatile....

    Lovely post, thank you


  4. Serendipity is in the air. I found a used, nice-condition copy of Milne's The Red House Mystery at our local Half-Price bookstore yesterday afternoon -- believe me, much harder to come by on this side of the pond. It has a lovely red cloth cover very like my first ever copy of Pooh (which was also the first hardback book I ever remember owning).

    I'm going to have to ponder on some couplings for your challenge - sounds like fun!

  5. and a wonderful cover as well!

  6. This sounds like absolute fun! Very well-deserved to be part of the 24! *pat* *pat*

  7. I have just read a short story by Jane Gardam about a secret of Jane Austen's love life which has been kept by generations of a Sidmouth family - 'The Sidmouth Letters'. It's a great story and I like her other ones too. Good pithy funny well-expressed writer.


  8. How about 'Gone with the wind' written by PG Wodehouse? It would probably be a quarter the length and definitely more fun to read. He makes mince-meat of fashionable America in the Wooster books, so what would he do with the Civil War?

  9. OVW, I'm laughing out loud at your combination! I'm guessing Wodehouse would do it much like Carol Burnett's spoof of GWTW. If you've never seen it, it's worth a watch on youtube. I'll put in the link for Part 1, Part 2 should show up on the sidebar.

  10. Nancy - I have meaning to read that for ages, and more so now that you thought of me so much!


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