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Who's Afraid of Jane Austen? How to Really Talk About Books You Haven't Read by Henry Hitchings
  

Who's Afraid of Jane Austen? How to Really Talk About Books You Haven't Read

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Good Housekeeping's view...

December 2009 Good Housekeeping selection.

Did you know that one of Proust’s sentences runs to 958 words? Actually, have you in fact ever read Proust? Or do you just have some vague recollection about the taste of madeleines? Not to worry, the subtitle of this book is How To Really Talk About Books You Haven’t Read – and the clue is in the Really. This clever book tricks you into thinking it is a straightforward cheat’s guide to getting away with minimum reading, maximum dinner-party kudos. But before you know it, you are so engrossed in the clever insights to greats such as Jane Austen - and our deep-rooted reasons for faking knowing more than we do - that you will have read a complete book before you realise… and have picked up plenty of fancy literary phrases to throw around at your next book group.

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Synopsis

Who's Afraid of Jane Austen? How to Really Talk About Books You Haven't Read by Henry Hitchings

Ever wondered how some people seem to have an opinion on every book ever published? Nowadays, there are so many books: how can anyone be well read anymore? Well, help is at hand. Let Henry Hitchings educate you in the invaluable skill of literary bluffing in this survivor's guide to talking about books you haven't read. With tips on how to bluff with confidence using quotable insights and invaluable trivia, Henry Hitchings covers all the great books you ought to have read but haven't got round to yet. If you want to be able to hold your own in a debate about Stephen Hawking or Philip Roth or perhaps you find Shakespeare or Dostoevsky intimidating, then look no further. Including literary heavyweights such as Ulysses, Bleak House and War and Peace this guide will equip you with all the bookish information you need to bluff your way through any scenario, be it a vital exam, an in-depth conversation at the pub or chatting up the potential love of your life. Contents includes, Jane Austen, Shakespeare, Henry James, James Joyce, Proust, Homer, Virgil, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Dickens, various contemporary writers, the Bible, the Koran, fairy tales, select bestsellers and some poetry.

Reviews

'This blagger's guide is a must. Chock-full of strategies to make a little learning go a long way'
The Guardian, Almee Shalan

'Hitchings is an amiable guide and includes useful tips'
Telegraph Review, Sameer Rahim

'Hitchings's whistlestop literary guide is often insightful and his advice to talking to actors is hilariously deadpan'
The Observer, Emily Stokes

'I slipped into this book with immense pleasure...an excellent miniature history of books...and it's funny too'
The Scotsman, William Leith

'Opinionated, funny...its main aim is to ignite a love of reading - in as British and unmawkish a way as possible'
The Daily Mail, Amber Pearson

'I slipped into this book with immense pleasure...an excellent miniature history of books...and it's funny too'
Evening Standard, William Leith

'I won't mince words. Read it and talk about it. A very smart (and funny) book.'
John Sutherland

'Entertaining'
Peggy Hughes, Scotsman

'Fascinating'
Dales Life

'Witty and anecdotal'
Bookseller

'From Shakespeare to Proust it's great fun to dip into'
Choice Magazine: Pick of the Paperbacks

About the Author

Henry Hitchings

Henry Hitchings was born in 1974. Educated at the universities of Oxford and London, he wrote his doctoral thesis on Samuel Johnson. He has contributed to many newspapers and magazines.

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Book Info

Publication date

3rd September 2009

Author

Henry Hitchings

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Publisher

John Murray Publishers Ltd an imprint of John Murray General Publishing Division

Format

Paperback
272 pages

Categories

The Real World
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ISBN

9781848540194

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