SANDITON Discussion Group discussion

28 views
Be sure to complete bit.ly form for book

Comments Showing 1-50 of 50 (50 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Hi, All. Excited to get the convo started next Thurs, 1/16. Be sure you have signed up to get the book by following the bltly link in my invitation email. Cheers! Sharon


message 2: by Kenny (new)

Kenny | 1 comments Hi, are there ways of watching the show by streaming online? I don’t have a television, but I do have a computer and an internet connection. Thanks!

Kenny


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Yes I think so. Go to wgbh.org. I saw the site mention streaming.


message 4: by Massachusetts Center for the Book (last edited Jan 12, 2020 07:01PM) (new)

Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Folks books mailed out yesterday, Sat. They should be to you in plenty of time for Thurs. If not we can focus on the mss. pages and the show.

Update: I read the mss pp at Project Gutenberg and started watching tonight. Much to talk about! I'm going to finish viewing tomorrow ... hope I can wait til Thurs to talk about it!


message 5: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Legg | 2 comments Kenny wrote: "Hi, are there ways of watching the show by streaming online? I don’t have a television, but I do have a computer and an internet connection. Thanks!

Kenny"


You can stream a recording from the PBS website.


message 6: by Tom (last edited Jan 13, 2020 05:16AM) (new)

Tom Cummiskey (seniorlibrarian) | 6 comments Massachusetts Center for the Book wrote: "Folks books mailed out yesterday, Sat. They should be to you in plenty of time for Thurs. If not we can focus on the mss. pages and the show.

Update: I read the mss pp at Project Gutenberg and sta..."


Thank you, Sharon! I am almost done with the Hoopla version of the original chapters, and after having watched last night, I must say, it's exciting!! This is my first ever foray into Austen, so I am glad I am a clean slate as far as Austen goes. I've read that Austen fans are surprised by this book. I''m sure the Riordan version will be somewhat a departure as well.


message 7: by Denise (new)

Denise (dfarm) | 5 comments I watched the show last night, and have started the book. Looking forward to the discussion!!


message 8: by Rhoda (new)

Rhoda  Crowell (rpcrowell) | 1 comments Can't wait to read the novel and watch the series on WGBY.


message 9: by Noreen13 (new)

Noreen13 (noreenmarie) | 7 comments Finally caught up with the TV series. That Charlotte - a sensible girl indeed just as Lady Denham pointed out. And Miss Lambe - good on her for not letting society turn her into a curiosity to be gaped at!
Haven't finished the book yet - librarians don't actually read at work despite what the public may think - hope to finish this weekend before the next episode airs.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Noreen13 wrote: "Finally caught up with the TV series. That Charlotte - a sensible girl indeed just as Lady Denham pointed out. And Miss Lambe - good on her for not letting society turn her into a curiosity to be g..."

Good on for you! I'm going to read the book along with the series, I think. Someone in our morning kick off said that the first 2 episodes run through Chap 10 ... so that's my goal before Sunday!

P.S. I know, I know, Wikipedia ... but ... still ... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanditon is a good overview of what Austen herself wrote before leaving off.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Rhoda wrote: "Can't wait to read the novel and watch the series on WGBY."

Love GBY!


message 12: by Sharon (new)

Sharon | 2 comments I thought I had lost my mind. I watched the two hour episode. A day or so later I read the first couple of pages of the Project Gutenberg text and thought how different the two were. Then I realized my book mark had fallen out of the book so I began again. Much to my surprise the book matched the PBS show. I could not, for the life of me, figure out what I thought I had read that didn't match the tv. The next morning I remembered about the online version and realized that the cover of the book says it is based on the tv show. What a relief!


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
I think the novel.and the book are tracking. The manuscript pp left by Austen are quite different in the way the action begins. I think the interpretation is sound but quite a bit more modern in its presentation of the freedom of movement afforded Charlotte, don't you think?


message 14: by Sharon (new)

Sharon | 2 comments If one is watching the PBS show one doesn't have to read the book. It is identical, but then again, the cover of the book says it is based on the TV show, vs watch the tv show based on the book.

Charlotte does seem to have a lot more freedom of movement than I remember in other early 1800 stories. I can see it in her hamlet, but in the town it seems a bit much. She is, however, there without any real chaperone. Mrs. Parker has her household to run and Charlotte was not known to them prior to the carriage upset. Letting your daughter go off with people about whom you know nothing seems a bit strange.

I'm enjoying the show. I just have to suspend my judgement and enjoy the characters, costumes, and scenery.


message 15: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Prolman | 4 comments Okay, I haven't had a chance to watch any of the series yet, but I got a good couple hours of reading in this morning while my fiance was having cataract surgery, and I am... nonplussed.

I realize this is a novelization of the television show, but while I see Austen's characters, I am not seeing Austen -- her wit, her subtlety, her humor. I feel like I am being hit over the head with the plot. This doesn't mean I am not enjoying the story, just that it feels like a period piece to me and not a Jane Austen story.


message 16: by Beth (new)

Beth (bethieq82) | 1 comments I was interested in this book club because I actually completed a project to read all of Austen just last year (and watch all the adaptations for each book), and read her three major unfinished works just in December, so her version of Sanditon was still fresh for me. With that in mind, I tried reading the first few chapters of the book and was slightly disappointed. I was quite surprised that Kate Riordan didn't retain any of the original text, but simply used the characters and the broad strokes of the story. While this book is probably a perfectly fine historical fiction novel on its own right -- as an Austen continuation, I didn't feel that the beginning part that I've read so far really captured the wit or tone or indeed any facet of Austen's writing style that has made her so beloved for so long. So with that said, I'm looking forward to watching the tv show more, because the lack of Austen's specific tone is much less apparent.


message 17: by Katie (new)

Katie | 1 comments I just started reading it last night, having read the beginning of Austen's original a week ago. I definitely miss having Charlotte's interior thoughts, since her thoughts so perfectly capture Austen's wit and social commentary. I'm going to read Sanditon thinking of it as just a fun Austen adaptation. I am going to try and read ahead since the book and show are so similar.


message 18: by Denise (new)

Denise (dfarm) | 5 comments I wondered about Charlotte's freedom too, and agree with Sharon's comments (message 14 on this thread). I think that Charlotte's family is struggling. Charlotte is so strong willed and really pushed them to say yes; most likely against their better judgement. It was obvious to me that her mother did not want her to go.
Also, Mr. Parker is so buys trying to build Sanditon, that he's not even aware of what Charlottte is doing unless she is helping him. Mrs. Parker is busy with her household and kids. I think that between Charlotte helping with the kids, and Mrs. Parkers overwhelm nobody even realizes that Charlotte is going where ever she wants.


message 19: by Denise (new)

Denise (dfarm) | 5 comments I'm really enjoying the costumes, scenery and the characters.

I want to start this section by saying that I am only watching and reading up to where the series ends each week.
Speaking of characters:
1. I want to find out what's going on with the brother/sister Edward and Esther. I think by now it's most likely that they, especially Esther, have something going on with each other.

2. What is Clara's story? She's definitely motivated to get what she wants. This is evident when she intentionally burns herself. Any ideas on her backstory?

3. It's obvious to me that Sidney is going to be our Darcy. We can already see it happening at the end of the last episode.

4. I can understand Lady Denham disliking that her family members are like vultures waiting to inherit her fortune. Has she always been so cranky and bossy? I wonder what she was like when her husband was alive.

5. I like Miss Lambe. I hope she turns out to be a strong woman character. I'd also like to see how Sidney became her heir. How was he so close to the family. Any guesses?

6. My favorite character is Charlotte. I love that she speaks her mind, even when it is so out of character for a woman during that time period. Who are your favorite characters?


message 20: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Legg | 2 comments I am halfway through the book and have yet to begin the tv series. I am enjoying the prose but having trouble with the character relationships. Conversations and shared experiences seem short--sort of like reading mini diaries. Does anyone else have these impressions?


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
I'm writing from Midwinter ... and thought a lot about my feelings, too, on my drive down to Phila. I was also very surprised that the novel .. is this a novelization? ... didn't begin with the Sanditon mss pages ... or at least some portions of them .. I was expecting a "completion" of the manuscript but I think this is an interpretation of them instead. That aside ... or maybe owing to that? ... I'm finding the dramatization a bit easier to square ... and find myself comparing it with other Austen dramatizations ... the P&P with Keira Knightley, Emma with Gwyneth Paltrow, etc.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Lisa wrote: "Okay, I haven't had a chance to watch any of the series yet, but I got a good couple hours of reading in this morning while my fiance was having cataract surgery, and I am... nonplussed.

I realize..."
just caught this ... so yes "novelization" rather than completion .. surprised me...


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
What are we thinking about Sydney Parker vs "Young Suter"? They are both poised to be attaching to Charlotte and so I'm finding myself comparing the dashing if gruff man of the world with the committed, potentially class-jumping, construction manager who would be an architect. So much of the theme of this story seems to be about building and creation that "young Suter" (does he have a first name yet???) would seem a man of the hour ... but I think the difference in social class is going to have to come into play, don't you think?


message 24: by Jean (new)

Jean E | 2 comments Hi to the Massachusetts Center for the Book group--
I'm late to this discussion. Was wondering if people have seen the movie from a few years ago called Love and Friendship, an adaptation of Jane Austen's Lady Susan. At some point adaptations or completions veer off and turn into other productions; the author seems almost a sidebar. Whole pages of dialogue from an Austen novel can go into a new production and be relevant 200 years later; I'll need to see what of hers has been retained. Jean


message 25: by Jan (new)

Jan | 1 comments I decided to finish the book before watching the series - don't worry, not planning to drop any spoilers. (I found reading and watching Game of Thrones in semi sequence gave me a headache.)
I liked the book, but the tone seems a bit too modern for Austen and more plot directed than a period/people piece as I think of Austen. If I consider the book separate from Austen, for me it is more successful. I'm looking forward now to catching up with the series.


message 26: by Noreen13 (new)

Noreen13 (noreenmarie) | 7 comments Massachusetts Center for the Book wrote: "I'm writing from Midwinter ... and thought a lot about my feelings, too, on my drive down to Phila. I was also very surprised that the novel .. is this a novelization? ... didn't begin with the San..."
I so agree about the "novelization" comment - a bit more modern in tone than I anticipated. Still an enjoyable read thus far but not quite I expected.


message 27: by Noreen13 (new)

Noreen13 (noreenmarie) | 7 comments Massachusetts Center for the Book wrote: "What are we thinking about Sydney Parker vs "Young Suter"? They are both poised to be attaching to Charlotte and so I'm finding myself comparing the dashing if gruff man of the world with the commi..."
Austen excels at the creating unlikely pairings who do indeed come to make loving partnerships so Sydney seems like the suitor who will ultimately prevail plus it seems that he also has the funds, too. But the young Suter is kind-hearted and caring and perhaps Sanditon will be the making of him! It will be fun to watch it all unfold but at the moment I am rooting for Suter.


message 28: by Tom (new)

Tom Cummiskey (seniorlibrarian) | 6 comments We had a lively book discussion today at the Plymouth Public Library. Many felt the book and series are light in nature, though enjoyable. We all think that Sidney has many mysteries to reveal.
The group wants to come back in a few weeks when the series on Masterpiece wraps up. It's not Victoria or Downton, but still captures attention. I must admit, I am getting a bit bored with the Riordan book.


message 29: by Noreen13 (new)

Noreen13 (noreenmarie) | 7 comments Now that you mention it, I am feeling a bit bored as well. I am enjoying the Masterpiece version a bit more than the novelization. A rare occurrence indeed.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Hi, All,

I brought an awful cold back from Midwinter and have been just catching up on comments before the show tonight. (I'm not superbowling, as you can tell!).

Is Otis our Wickham? That's what I keep find myself doing in the series ... looking for models in other of Austen's novels. Maybe that's the only responsible way to complete an unfinished mss, go into other of the author's books and finding models. The problem here would be in creating a character flaw in a character representing the freed slave population, and so I'm thinking that we may not go there, but still, the temptation to put him in that slot as the gold-digging charmer is hard to deny.

Of course some of you know the answer to this!


message 31: by Noreen13 (new)

Noreen13 (noreenmarie) | 7 comments Just watched the latest episode of Masterpiece and well, ugh!
Cricket, a mixed team. No, nay, never! Women played cricket in 1745 according to the historians maids i.e. young women against other young women. But not as depicted in this episode. So I found this so distracting that I was pulled right out of the story.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
V. good point, Noreen.


message 33: by Jean (new)

Jean E | 2 comments Hi,
The "completed" Sanditon seems to be a Regency romp, not even based on, but suggested by, characters from Jane Austen's unfinished novel of the same title. At first, Kate Riordan nods to Jane in certain phrases and dilemmas we recognize from P&P and other novels, but then she seems to leave off making those references and just lets the story run. It's fine as light amusement, but makes me wish we had Jane's insights, direction and commentary instead for some of the situations. Jean


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Jean wrote: "Hi,
The "completed" Sanditon seems to be a Regency romp, not even based on, but suggested by, characters from Jane Austen's unfinished novel of the same title. At first, Kate Riordan nods to Jane ..."


I am with you on the novel (or novelization?) ... it is fine but seems so unlike Austen in tone that I feel I'm in a parallel world there ... what I'm trying to sort out now is whether the series and -- thus the book -- are true to the concerns Austen developed in other of her books. I was thinking about her treatment of the slave trade and its perversion of values (Sense and Sensibility), the gold-digging charmer (P & P), the independent woman who has to take a gentleman's affairs in hand (Emma), and etc. So I'm watching myself looking out for Austen tropes in the process.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Hi, All, four of us had a good discussion this a.m. and decided that we'd like to try to have a real time convo when the series ends.

A few thoughts from this a.m.: Charlotte's freedom of movement seems too modern for us, and while we understand that her character is our anchor in the production, we can't quite believe that she can move so fluidly through so many spaces. Nancy and Jan find the restraint of movement in Austen ... and the way characters strain against it ... missing in ways that make the plot development almost too easy.

Kenny linked the look of Sanditon in the series as well as Charlotte intro'd as hunting game, to tropes of the American West in ways that all of us found illuminating.

I remain nervous about what is going to happen with the Otis character and what we are going to see about the treatment of abolition during this time in England.

I think I am forgetting a few salient points, and so I hope others on the call will reply to add more!

Meanwhile, I'll create a poll with one morning, one mid-day, and one late afternoon option for the end of the series and see if we can find a time for more of us to come together.

Cheers, Sharon


message 36: by Tom (new)

Tom Cummiskey (seniorlibrarian) | 6 comments I almost want to refrain from watching the series until I've read the book.
Being an Austen "newbie" I have nothing to compare it with, but as far as a period piece goes, it's falling short. They might have had Julian Fellowes have a go at it!! He seems to have done well with Downton. Or even Daisy Goodwin, author of Victoria.
I will continue to plow on, knowing that I should continue for the sake of the attendees to our library discussion last month. We are going to meet again on Feb. 25th for a wrap-up discussion over brown bag lunch. Cheers, Tom


message 37: by Tom (new)

Tom Cummiskey (seniorlibrarian) | 6 comments Noreen13 wrote: "Just watched the latest episode of Masterpiece and well, ugh!
Cricket, a mixed team. No, nay, never! Women played cricket in 1745 according to the historians maids i.e. young women against other yo..."


Yes, I could not believe it either, unless at seaside holiday communities, the rules all go "pear shaped"--as the Brits say!!


message 38: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Prolman | 4 comments Jan wrote:"I liked the book, but the tone seems a bit too modern for Austen and more plot directed than a period/people piece as I think of Austen. If I consider the book separate from Austen, for me it is more successful. I'm looking forward now to catching up with the series."

Yes. Reading the book, I had to disassociate it from being Austen. When I watch the episodes -- and I am only up to episode 2, which is what I get for living with two men who tolerate my Austen mania -- I enjoy the show as quasi-Regency fluff. The costumes are gorgeous.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Tom wrote: "I almost want to refrain from watching the series until I've read the book.
Being an Austen "newbie" I have nothing to compare it with, but as far as a period piece goes, it's falling short. They ..."


I'm not bothered by it ... I think we puzzled out in our call last week that the book is not driving the series but is, instead, a novelization of the series. If that's the case, I do wonder why they felt they needed it? Apparently this was a series done for ITV ... and it may or may not have a second season ... I honestly forget who on the call did the research to learn that. When we come together at the end of the series to do our real time wrap up I think I'm going to want to talk about the role of the book in the series and vice versa!


message 40: by Denise (new)

Denise (dfarm) | 5 comments I'm feeling the same way. The novelization has lost me.

Noreen13 wrote: "Now that you mention it, I am feeling a bit bored as well. I am enjoying the Masterpiece version a bit more than the novelization. A rare occurrence indeed."


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
I am having a hard time following the pace at which Sydney Parker and Charlotte Heywood are coming together!

Will someone who is very up on their Austen let us know, too, if there has ever been such a triangle as the one with Sydney, Charlotte, and Young Stringer? I can think of triangles in which there is a more and less admirable man/woman, and the plot works it out to bring the two worthies together ... but these two male characters seem each to be admirable in his own terms and thus a choice will not be so much about morality winning out but rather something else. Any Austen works go that way? Thx!


message 42: by Tom (new)

Tom Cummiskey (seniorlibrarian) | 6 comments I am catching up to the series finally in the book. I noticed something on page 229 with the interchange between Babington and Esther, when he's proposing to her. I'm not sure the literary term, but there's a parallel of sorts between what he says to Esther about "living a life free from pretence" "If we are to lead a better life, we are honour-bound to free ourselves from such a burden?" and the fact that the "gig is up" for Tom regarding how "well things are going" for Sanditon and the pretence he's been portraying to Mary all along. Buying that necklace was the sign of a desperate man!!
Suffice to say, watching the series, I did not catch that at all. I guess there is some merit to the novelization after all, however meager it may be.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Interesting...


message 44: by Noreen13 (new)

Noreen13 (noreenmarie) | 7 comments Massachusetts Center for the Book wrote: "I am having a hard time following the pace at which Sydney Parker and Charlotte Heywood are coming together!

Will someone who is very up on their Austen let us know, too, if there has ever been s..."


I am far from an Austen expert but the Sydney - Charlotte interactions ring true to the Austen I have read. Adding another worthy male with whom our heroine has always had pleasant relations and exchanges - where's the tension here? Except, of course, the money factor! Does our Charlotte choose the rich but complicated Sydney or the working man? Does class matter? Does Sydney commit himself to the widow, his former love instead of feisty Charlotte?
WWJD - what would Jane do? Not sure the novelization will tell us because it seems a little less Jane as it precedes.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
New bumper sticker ... WWJD? Love it! I'm feeling a bit sorry for young Stringer to say the truth. Such a nice young man... and yeah certainly no Byronic hero.


message 46: by Lisa (last edited Feb 24, 2020 11:31AM) (new)

Lisa Prolman | 4 comments I am an Austen aficionado, and I have never seen a triangle (rectangle?) like this one. Generally there is the heroine with two possible suitors -- one who is noble and good-hearted (or turns out that way) but unaware of his own feelings and one who has the appearance of goodness but has some deep-seated wrongness about them. The exception to this being when Elizabeth Bennet attracts the notice of Darcy's cousin Colonel Fitzwilliam, but he leaves the field before becoming a serious rival for her affections.


message 47: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Prolman | 4 comments Massachusetts Center for the Book wrote: "New bumper sticker ... WWJD? Love it! I'm feeling a bit sorry for young Stringer to say the truth. Such a nice young man... and yeah certainly no Byronic hero."

Sign me up for one of those bumper stickers! And agreed on feeling sorry for Young Stringer. I actually think Charlotte would be better off with someone who has appreciated her from the start.


message 48: by Noreen13 (new)

Noreen13 (noreenmarie) | 7 comments The series ending was so very modern - nothing tied up in a little bow, so very ambivalent. Choose your own adventure. Not v WWJD. However, after a moment or two of being totally gobsmacked I believe the viewers got the ending that works best in the 21st century.


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Noreen13 wrote: "The series ending was so very modern - nothing tied up in a little bow, so very ambivalent. Choose your own adventure. Not v WWJD. However, after a moment or two of being totally gobsmacked I belie..."

perhaps a 21st century ending but I can't help but think it's an ending in search of a second season!


Massachusetts Center for the Book (massbook) | 30 comments Mod
Hi, All ... I just sent an email asking if anyone wants to wrap up discussion in a virtual meeting. Doodle poll is here:

https://doodle.com/poll/vndgg7g8tcthccgi

WWJD????

Best, Sharon


back to top