Happy Birthday, Jane Austen

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In honor of Miss Austen's 235th birthday today, take another look at some of our Austen coverage over the past year or so...

Our recent auction report on P&P in original boards:

Not a beautiful object to behold, I grant you, but a copy in the drab boards in which it was first issued by Egerton in 1813 is something beyond the reach and ambition of almost all devoted and determined Austen collectors - even assuming they have the necessary funds.

Our interview with the editor of Quirk Books, the mastermind behind the bestselling mash-up, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. From the piece:

Rekulak says the overlap between Austen aficionados and horror/fantasy devotees has been greater than he imagined. He estimated that 80 percent of Austen readers have enjoyed the new violent version of the text.

"What I find is that most Austen fans are so fed up with all the Regency Pride and Prejudice sequels ... they appreciate the originality of this idea," Rekulak said.

Our coverage of the Morgan Library's  2009 exhibit on Jane Austen, A Woman's Wit.

Only a relatively small number of Austen's personal letters have survived. The Morgan is a major repository of her correspondence, with one third of all surviving letters held in the department of Literary and Historical Manuscripts. These materials--from correspondence to her beloved sister, Cassandra, to a letter to her niece in which all the words are spelled backwards, to "crossed letters" (also known as "cross-hatching," in which Austen, to save paper and reduce postal charges, wrote across the horizontal lines of text at right angles)--offer a remarkable glimpse into Austen's everyday life and relationships, as told in her characteristically witty and confident voice.

What else? How about a Jane Austen finger puppet? Or action figure?! She is omnipresent, and that's pretty wonderful.