Charles Dickens

15 Famous Authors and Their Fashion Label Counterparts

Literature and fashion meet once again as Club Monaco has announced that its flagship retail location will host a bookstore when it opens up this week, leaving us to ponder: what are our favorite authors’ fashion-label counterparts? … Read More

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Then and Now: Photos of Real Places Mentioned in Fiction

Looking through Jane Austen’s England by Roy and Lesley Adkins, it’s difficult not to compare the way things were during England’s Georgian and Regency eras with the England of today. The book gives a glimpse at everything from wedding superstitions to the “Bloody Code” (the country’s system of laws and punishments from 1688 to 1815, including the 50 offenses that were punishable by death), which highlight how much has changed since the time of Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice. But what about the times and places that influenced other classic authors? More specifically, what do the real places mentioned in famous works of fiction look like now? … Read More

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These Are the Authors Flavorwire Staffers Irrationally Hate

Here at Flavorwire, we do our level best to engage in rational, reasoned, thoughtful criticism. But there are elements of our culture that are simply out of our analytical grasp: the films, music, authors, television shows, etc. that we hate with no reasonable explanation. Welcome to Irrational Hatred Week, in which your Flavorwire staffers share what we loathe in a variety of media, and do our best to figure out why. Today’s Irrational Hatred topic: authors. … Read More

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Clever Photoshopped Covers of Book Titles Missing a Letter

Meme humor typically has an incredibly brief life span, rocketing to the top of Twitter’s trending topics or scoring a spot on Tumblr’s Radar feature, then fading out of both sight and mind within a couple days, give or take a day. But Twitter user @darth, whose moniker/avatar suggests a firm association with the Weird Twitter scene, has taken the #bookswithalettermissing hashtag into his or her own hands, photoshopping hypothetical covers for the crowd-sourced book titles. Highlights include a skateboarder on the cover of Cormac McCarthy’s lost masterpiece The Rad and a genuinely cool mirror-image design for A Clockwork Range. Click through for more notable examples of hashtag humor developing into something beyond a tweet. … Read More

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The Books Flavorwire Staffers Read Too Early

Earlier this week, writer Matthue Roth published My First Kafka: Runaways, Rodents, and Giant Bugs, a collection of Kafka stories re-told for children. This is a brilliant idea, since anyone exposed to Kafka at a young age is likely to grow up stranger and better — even if it’s only a form of Kafka. Here at the Flavorwire office, the book sparked a few conversations about age-appropriate reading, and more than one story about a great book read too early. Some of us still have the scars. After the jump, check out the literary regrets of a selection of staffers who read the classics much too early, and then let us know which non-age-appropriate read still haunts you in the comments. … Read More

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10 Famous Literary Characters That Are Significantly Younger Than You Think

When an author creates a character, he or she bestows upon this fictional person specific attributes — age, looks, certain proclivities — that may or may not be made explicit on the page. But whether the character is explained fully or not, there’s no telling what will happen when the culture at large gets a hold of him. Especially if the notoriously age-garbling film industry gets involved. After the jump, prepare to be shocked at famous literary characters that are significantly younger than you (probably) think they are. … Read More

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10 Classic Books That Have Somehow Been Turned Into Ballets

Next season, Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet will be presenting an adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s beloved novel, The Handmaid’s Tale. While there’s no denying the power of the book, it does seem somewhat strange fodder for a ballet — given that it’s a dystopic indictment of fundamentalism and gender norms and all. However, as it turns out, a number of surprising novels have been adapted for the stage as ballets or operas — check out a selection of these after the jump, and feel free to add to the list in the comments. … Read More

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The Literary Figures With the Weirdest Obsessions

This week saw the release of Brian Kimberling’s excellent debut novel, Snapper, a delightful, wry story of a young ornithologist romping around the Indiana backcountry in a glitter-encrusted truck. There’s no doubting Kimberling’s own obsession with birding after reading the book. But Kimberling is only the latest in a long history of authors with burning, decidedly offbeat obsessions — and the author himself has put together a list of his favorites. Click through to learn some things about D.H. Lawrence’s proclivities you weren’t sure you wanted to… Read More

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The Doubles: 10 Pairs of Great Books With the Same Titles

There must be something in the water this spring — that’s the water the publishing industry all drinks, that is. This month, Algonquin is publishing Jill McCorkle’s novel Life After Life, and in April, Reagan Arthur/Little, Brown will come out with Kate Atkinson’s, er, Life After Life. Oops! Both novels, as it happens, are quite good (and are sharing top billing as the American Booksellers Association’s Indie Next Pick in April), and we’re looking forward to “accidentally” having to buy them both. Intrigued by this phenomenon, we dug around for other examples of two great books sporting the same title — though none of our other pairs were born so close to one another. Check them out after the jump, and let us know if we missed any of your favorite titular doppelgangers in the comments. … Read More

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Victorian Novels That Would Make Great TV Dramas

Here’s a truth universally acknowledged: Television and the Victorian novel are two wholly different media. Make as many comparisons as you will, but the 19th-century English novel will never experience any kind of seamless transition into the world of serial television. The incentives of the two forms are so incongruous, not to mention the contrast in creative and productive conditions that goes into generating them. When Laura Miller emphatically told us that “The Wire is NOT like Dickens,” she made many good points — an obvious one being that if one wished to reference a canonical novelist in lofty conversation about The Wire, Dickens would be a safe bet. But as Miller went on to state: Dickens wrote prose narrative on paper, and The Wire is a visual drama. It’s a good place to start as any if we’re looking to tease out the distinctions between the two.

Still, it won’t stop television (or film, for that matter) from continuing to draw on written stories. Alfred Hitchcock, that undisputed master of cinema, took from novelists such as Patrick Hamilton, Patricia Highsmith, and Dorothy Sayers for his film and television work alike. Alfred Hitchcock Presents, however, focused on a different story per episode, while the idea behind The Wire-versus-Dickens comparison is that such serial storytelling has the power to hook the viewer time and time again. … Read More

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