Category Archives: Books and Writers

Free the Bears, by Mary Hutton and Julie Miller

Mission of Free The Bears: To protect, preserve and enrich the lives of bears throughout the world.

Mawson’s guardian Mark says: Today I am proud to talk about the book ‘Free The Bears’. It is the story of a rescue organisation which I have supported for twenty years. This fascinating and often heartbreaking read is about a long hard battle to better the lot of cruelly treated animals.

It is now widely known that for the sake of the supposed ‘properties’ of their bile thousands of bears have been imprisoned and cruelly treated. In Perth, Australia, one evening in 1993, Mary Hutton watched in horror as the first footage of the practice played on the TV. ‘It was the eyes that did it, those limpid black pools, pleading and frightened’. After weeks of sleepless nights she decided that she ‘had to do something’. But what? All she could think of was drawing up a handwritten petition and nervously standing in the local shopping centre.

‘Would you like to sign a petition to help the bears in China’, I said in a weak voice. ‘Too right I would, love! Just give me the bloody pencil’. .. After half an hour people were queuing to sign. Ch. 1

And so it began. A 55 year old housewife and mother found her named linked with the bears in newspapers, even Parliament. ‘What can we do to help?’, strangers began to ask. ‘It was then I realised I could not stop with this one petition .. I had to help free the bears, one step at a time’.

Free Bears Oora 2 2922

The sloth bear on the back cover had a miserable existance ‘dancing’ for tourists. Now he lives safe and pampered. In exchange, his Kandahar owner received seed money for a small business.

In the early days the small but fast growing group focused on raising money to direct to those on the ground, in particular Jill Robertson who later formed Animals Asia and who has done so much fine work. Out of the blue ‘Free The Bears’ was asked to help with little Sun bears in Cambodia and destined for a horrible fate (I will not describe it here: it still upsets me). This mission seemed impossible and was not helped by some idiocies of bureaucracy at the Australian end. But again, good people rallied: a member of Parliament, a television crew, an airline, Taronga zoo and many more. The saved bears, ‘Lucille’, ‘Victoria’, and ‘Mr Hobbs’ touched down in Sydney in 1997.

Since that time Free the Bears has worked ceaselessly, one step at a time, first in Cambodia then Laos and Vietnam, to build and run sanctuaries for the animals. Teaming with local groups and agencies, Free The Bears has helped raise awareness in these nations about their precious wildlife. Humans are helped too: some of the very villagers who, driven by extreme poverty, once poached bears, are now equipped and trained to be rangers, diligently protecting the wildlife in their territories.

Such was the success in Cambodia that Mary was approached in 2002 by Mrs Maneka Ghandi and Wildlife SOS of India. They wanted to do something both about the plight of sloth bears forced to ‘perform’ for tourists, and about the poverty of their owners, the Kandahar people. Could Free the bears help? Free the Bears did. More than five hundred bears later, a great day arrived in 2009.

I watch with a lump in my throat as Raju, the last known dancing bear of India, walks the road to freedom. This is animal welfare history in the making.

Free Bears Mawson Oora 1 Small

Mawson Bear has always sat up proudly in support of ‘Free The Bears’ which works for fellow bears everywhere.

Mary speaks not just of the good days and successes but of the struggles, the disappointments, and of personal loss. We are also confronted, sadly, with the seeming unending capacity of some humans for the ghastly treatment of animals. Some of the rescued bears were so badly injured and weak they could not survive. Others had lost limbs, or had organ troubles, or had lost all their teeth, or were blind. Twenty six years after Mary Hutton stood up alone in that shopping centre, and despite all the work achieved by Free the Bears, and by similar organisations around the world, the need is as great as ever. Yet every single bear rescued can now live a safe and pampered life in a sanctuary.

The light is back in their eyes.

Ways to help: One way would be to buy and read this book and share it about. All proceeds go to the bears.

Where to find Free the Bears published by Pan Macmillan Australia (2013), ISBN13: 9781742611969. Please consider buying direct from FreeTheBears.Org. Here you can even get a signed copy; also merchandise like the cute teddies in my photos. A book or a teddy or a donation, or just sharing on this post: it all helps.

Useful links: The book can also be found at Amazon and AbeBooks.com and at Bookdepository.com .

Writer Julie Miller is passionate about travel, animal welfare, and Thailand in particular.

At FreeTheBears.Org and also on Instagram you can can see the latest on the work. Sometimes (and this shows how the effort is needed as much as ever) you can follow a rescue in progress.

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

Wildlife SOS does tremendous work with bears and elephants.

You have wandered into Mawson Bear’s web-den. Between naps in gardens, Mawson ponders about Baffling Things. He is the Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

Nana Scrappy, by Ryan Cochrane

“Life was good, Nana Scrappy was thinking to herself as she poured another cup of herbal tea.”

Mawson’s Guardian Mark says:

With her lovely house, her careful routines, and her beautiful garden cared for by Eugene O’Squirrel, Nana’s life is indeed good. She is even going to be awarded for her superb home grown cabbages. The unexpected visit by her muddy pawed granddog Barry couldn’t possibly upset it all. Could it?

But it does. Understanding breaks down between the young dog who loves burgers and his loving Nana who only wants him to eat the best food for puppies ‘designed by scientists.’ Barry disappears. Nana must join forces with all the O’Squirrels, Harold the archaeologist and a huge guineapig with bad burps to find the youngster. Will they be in time? Will Sparfield the guineapig eat all the furniture? And what about the prize for cabbages?

NanaScrappyLrge 2754

Scruffy, Blizzard the Husky, Mawson and Gustav getting worried about missing Barry

As I read this delightful story about friends helping one another, I wanted to be young again so as to be able to read it with a child’s eyes. Or have a child at hand to read it to. I could almost hear the places where we would stop and exclaim at moments in the story and point to the illustrations (by Jessica McCarthy) . We would exclaim at different things, I’m sure, every time we read it, and there are many postive messages.

NanaScrappylrgCover 2758

If you like dogs, squirrels, guineapigs, burgers, and visits to Nanas you will enjoy reading this tale. (You don’t necessarily have to like cabbages.) And it’s only the first. There will be more.

Nana Scrappy is published by Olympia Books and is entirely suitable for young dogs, bears, guineapigs, squirrels, and all who love them.

Where to find it: Amazon, Olympia Books, Book Depository, and AbeBooks.com.

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.
 

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

Suitable Gifts for Writer-Bears

Fellow Baffled Ones of this befuddled but bright world, It’s Me, Mawson, writer-bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In. You may be baffled about what to give a writer (or bear) for a gift.

Pens Presents 1 small
Here’s Me and I happen to have some presents. What could they be?
Pens Presents Sheoak 2596

Oh this is grand. A pen! Just the gift for a writer. This one is, let me see, fire-hardened she-oak. Wonderful.

Pens Presents Ready 2595

What could this one be? It feels sort of feathery. Plump Sleeping Bears! It’s a … it’s a ..

Pens Presents Opened 2592

It’s a plume! It’s a plume for pluming words! A big feathered pen. A quill. My goodness.

Pens Presents display 2591

I am a lucky bear. No writer can leave a plume like that alone. I’m going to plume some words right away.

Pens Presents 5 2587

Oh yes, I can feel my ponders going all the way down this errr quill plume pen thingy straight to the paper. Pens make grand gifts for writers. And for this writer-bear.

Remember, bears, no taking of feathers from the birds who grew them without permission. Not even for plumes. That’s most important

Our book is from Publisher Obscura which does fun and beautiful books for grownups. It’s an imprint of Odyssey Books.

“Just pure magic”. Susan Hampson, Reviewer on Books from Dawn to Dusk about It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In.

“It’s a small book packed with big emotions. Mawson, the big-hearted, soul-searching teddy bear is here to help.” Cheryl Pasquier of Madhouse Family reviews.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps). and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

Chivalrous Readers, Thank You, from Mawson Bear

Thanks to our many chivalrous helper and reviewers including:

Emma of FNM Book Reviews. Comforting, like an old security blanket

Pauline Dewberry and Casey Cat and Gibbs Cat of Thedailymews.com and Live well, Being Happy. who said, Absolutely lovely; so sweet and poignant. It makes my heart sing.

Michael Bernal on Goodreads.  I was quite surprised by this book. I became quite emotional when reading it.

TBF Mawson Ad for TBF

For a little book there is a large emotional impact here… This is a perfect little gift for close friends, family or for yourself, just as a reminder that you are loved and not alone.Bookshine and Rainbows , Steph Warren

So sweet and poignant. It makes my heart sing.  Pauline Dewberry of Thedailymews.com and Live well, Being Happy.

Ooha, valiant blogger at OverRated Sensibilities.  This story really got to me. It made me smile like a lunatic. It made me want to reach for a tissue.

Sir Scotland the Brave smites the keyboard

Anthony Avila, Author of the Nightmare Wars series: A wonderful story, filled with heart, emotion, and done in a unique picture book style.

Jackie Law, Amazon Top 500 Reviewer, at Never ImitateThis little story made me well up …A lovely, poignant story with delightful illustrations. It would make a thoughtful gift including to yourself. 

Lisa and Baby Bear, old friends and grand helpers: Buy this for the smiles, the lump in the throat, the memories, the hugs. Buy it for yourself and your special friends – bear and human! 

Friend Gold Pad Oscar~2

Linda, valiant putter-of-books-into-bags at Linda’s Book Bag blog:  It might sound ridiculous but (BW) brought a tear to my eye.

Marisa of McFly’s Book Bliss who said, This book was absolutely precious.

Cheryl Pasquier, valiant blogger, of the Madhouse Family: It’s a small book packed with big emotions. Mawson, the big-hearted soul- searching teddy bear is here to help.

Bunchbooks 8.jpg

Debbie Young, who reviewed Bright World even though very busy creating the Sophie Sayers Village Mysteries,

Bette F. who boldly took Mawson’s book on her visit to India: A book for all the ages.

Susan Hampson, valiantly blogging through the nights at Books From Dusk To Dawn: Just pure magic.  A bear’s love is never far away and can be shared and passed on through the generations.

bw handbagtedetteslookon

Books In My Handbag where Jessie Cahalin featured Mawson (can you see a bear in there?),

Hasanthi’s Book World, who kindly made Bright World her Pick of the Month! (and gave our Mawson a visit to Sri Lanka),

Nina at Cozy pages, who gave Mawson a very grand shout out. Lots of lovely reviews there.

dan mios small

Dan Durdjevic, author of the remarkable novel ,written in real time, Mirror Image of Sound, . “ “This gentle, calming, life-affirming little gem won’t fail to put a smile on your face as your read it.”

Verena who also for years hosted Mawson’s old Web Den and gave quiet encouragement,

Ally K  who kindly Bear-Toobed, umm Book-Tubed, Mawson’s book,

 

For kindly sharing fuzzy Selfies of themselves with Its A Bright World:

ThreadBears on Twitter
Sir Peregrine (call me Perry, dear chaps), doing great deeds with samples of very particular grape juices,
Hippo, Sloth and Friends, Bumble, Jock and Wasp, being valiant friends on Twitter.

AND All fellow writers at Odyssey Books and Publisher Obscura, including:
Michelle Lovi, publisher of Odyssey Books,
Elizabeth Foster, author of Esme’s Wish,
Isobel Blackthorn, author of The Drago Tree and more,
Cindy Cipriano, author of Fading,
Carolyn Denman, author of Songlines ,
Rachael Nightingale, writer, playwright, educator and actor,
Felicity Banks, author of The Antipodean Queen series,
Vacen Taylor, author of the Star Child series,
Patricia Leslie, author of The Ouroboros Key.

It’s a Bright World to Feel Lost In, by Mawson Bear, makes a gentle read for anyone who’s known that inexpressibly Baffling Thing, the feeling of being Lost.

It’s all over the place including at BookDepository.com (with free shipping too all around this bright world). ISBN: 978-1-922200-44-0 .Also  Amazon and Abebooks.com and Goodreads.com .

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps). And Writer-Bear 

 

Georgette Heyer: Meticulous craftswoman

The Tedettes are absorbing the novels of the Queen of Regency Romance, Georgette Heyer. They’re learning about their heroine from Jane Aiken Hodges biography.  It’s called  The Private World of Georgette Heyer  (Quotes from the Chivers 1984 edition).

Hodge’s Foreword:  “She was .. an immensely skilled and meticulous craftswoman.  She did her best to conceal her high standards and stern moral code behind the mask of romantic comedy.”

Heyer 1 small 2268

Plots and technique

(From Chapter 2). ‘Heyer once said, “My plots are abysmal and I think of them with blood and tears”.  Her family confirm she did indeed work at her plots with book and tears .. plunged in black gloom when things went badly, prowling restlessly about the house until she had her plan worked out, when she would sit down and write … at high speed, often late into the night.’

Heyer said of her own work in one letter to her publisher:

“ … The Unknown Ajax and Venetia are the best of my later works. My style is really a mixture of Johnson and Austen – what I rely on is a certain gift for the farcial … I know its useless to talk about technique in these degenerate days – but no less a technician than Noel Coward reads me because he thinks my technique is so good.  I’m proud of that.”

(From Chapter 8)  She kept a single fan letter, received in 1963 from former political prisoner in Romania. The writer spoke of how she had read Friday’s Child before her arrest, and for 12 long years had told and retold the story, committed to memory, of “what Kitten did next” to her fellow inmates.

“Truly, your characters managed to awaken smiles, even when hearts were heavy, stomachs empty and the future dark indeed”.

Praise that would astonish any writer. Certainly a letter to keep.

Much in Hodge’s biography is of technical interest to writers: Heyer’s dealing with her several publishers and agents, and her views about the blurbs and jackets. There is a lesson to be learned by all too from reading about Heyer’s decades-long tax problems and, even though she always earned a lot, her occassional cash flow problems. These mangled finances were caused by her and her husband not taking a business-like approach at the outset.

The Tedettes leave you with their favourite observation from Hodge’s biography:

“She had no patience for .. Russian gloom.  If she had been one of Chekhov’s three sisters they would have got to Moscow.”

Thanks for joining the Teddettes as they explored the Regency world of Georgette Heyer.

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

 

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps). and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In  from Publisherobscura.com .

‘Great book, well written and extremely engaging. Bonus it is all about bears!!!!
Marvellous !!!!!!!’  Reviewer Navaron on Amazon.

The Private World of Georgette Heyer, by Jane Aiken Hodge

Considered queen of the Regency romance, Georgette Heyer is one of the most beloved historical novelists of our time. As Hodge states in the Foreword of her biography: ” She gave her name to a recognisable genre of fiction”.

Thrilled by Jane Austen’s books, the Tedettes looked about for more Regency novels. They’ve now got their paws on Chivers 1984 edition of The Private World of Georgette Heyer

Heyer 3 sm 2272

(Foreword) “From none of the 51 titles in print when she died would you guess (Heyer) spent the early years of her married life (to Ronald Rougier) in rough camps first in Tanganyika then in Macedonia. But she recognised this for experience she could not use. No heroine of hers would ever sit in a grass hut writing a novel”.

“A best seller all her life without the aid of publicity, Heyer never gave an interview and only answered fan letters herself it they had made an interesting historical point.”

The biographer had access to private papers, correspondence and family archives. Hodge details the research that Heyer applied to her period and the skill and craft that went into her characters.  Yet for most of her career, she was dismissed as a ‘light romantic’.

Hodge’s overriding theme is well expressed, I think, in this observation: ” If anyone could make the romantic novel respectable it should have been G. Heyer, unacknowledged moralist and stylist extraordinary. It did not happen in her lifetime and she minded, silently .. (yet) .. She gave an immense amount of pleasure to all kinds of people, and must have known she did.”

More posts soon as Mawson’s Guardian (and the Teddettes) explore the regency world of Georgette Heyer.

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps). and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In  from Publisherobscura.com .

‘Great book, well written and extremely engaging. Bonus it is all about bears!!!!
Marvellous !!!!!!!’  Reviewer Navaron on Amazon.

The Tedettes Discover The Georgette Heyer Heroes

Thrilled by Jane Austen’s novels, the Tedettes looked about for more books on the Regency. Their house (like every house, surely) turned out to be a treasure trove of novels by Georgette Heyer.  They also got their paws on Jane Aiken Hodges biography,  The Private World of Georgette Heyer  (Chivers 1984 edition).

Heyer 2 small 2269

The Tedettes get their paws on a trove of Georgette Heyer Novels

Heroes

Georgette Heyer created her heroes very deliberately.  In correspondence with her publishers she gleefully refers to them in a private shorthand by Type, explaining for instance that one particular character is the “The Heyer Mark I” or why for another book she has chosen “The Heyer Mark II” and so on.  She’d skilfully build up such a Type, and thus the readers ‘conceptions of such a man,  and then two or three novels later, playfully turn around the readers’ assumptions by changing the decisions and actions of the Hero.

Mr Rochester: the prototype.

Jane Aiken Hodge found unpublished articles by Heyer, one of which will fascinate her readers (see Ch. 5 of the bio) as it concerns Mr Rochester,  from Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre. Heyer says:

“It is a accepted fact that women form the bulk of the novel reading public and what woman with romantic leanings wants to read novels which have as their heroes the sort of men she meets every day of her mundane life. (Mr Rochester) is rude, overbearing, and often a bounder, but these blemishes, however repulsive they may be in real life, can be made in the hands of a skilled novelist extremely attractive to many women.”

How ‘Fluffy’ was the Romance, really?

Hodge makes the case that underneath the entertaining friction and tension between her heroes and heroines lies an abiding principle: the protagonists are maturing through the pages into a rich and full relationship .

Heyer’s idea of romance never ends with “happily married”.  Many of her characters in fact get married early in the book.  It is the story of their growing mutual respect and understanding afterwards that interests the writer, and this must be the feature that kept, and still keeps, millions of readers coming back for more.

Antonia Byatt, in an article in Nova, stated,

” (Heyer) is playing romantic games with the novel of manners. In her world of romanticised anti romanticism … men and women really talk to each other … and plan to spend the rest of their lives together developing the relationships”.

One more post to come as soon as Mawson’s Guardian (and the Teddettes) explore more of the the regency world of Georgette Heyer.

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps). and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In  from Publisherobscura.com .

‘Great book, well written and extremely engaging. Bonus it is all about bears!!!!
Marvellous !!!!!!!’  Reviewer Navaron on Amazon.

Valiant Reader, Brave Deeds Await You

Mawson Bear’s Guardian writes: Your mission, Noble Reader, should you choose to accept it, is to challenge the Dark Lord that holds all Writers (and one Writer-Bear) in its thrall.

Only the trusty keyboard of the Doughty Reader can quell this Fearful Thing.

What, you wonder, could this Horror be? It’s dread name, gentle reader, is Oblivion. (Mawson hides under his cushion. The guardian steels himself and types on.)

Oblivion bringeth it’s doom thus: the writer-bear-or-person whose splendid work gaineth reviews to the magic number of Lots is thereby raised to the happy circle of Being Noticed.

Others, no matter how great be their talents (nor how handsome be the writer-bear) may well fall toward the Void.

Sir Scotland the Brave smites the keyboard

Sir Scotland The Brave, in shiny armour, Smiteth the Keyboard Most Valiantly

As The Reader, you can wield your awesome power thus:
Quest deep within the Caverns of Amazon.
The Galleries of GoodReads.
And of Chapters Indigo
Wander into Waterstones and
The by-ways of Barnes and Noble.  

Seek ye the *Star Ratings*.

Ride at them straight and true.  Smite twice. Thrice. Fourfold.  And Yea! if such be thy will, smite yet again! (Smiting once only, though, is right out.)

And, if your arm waxeth mighty that day, rest not, but swing down again your keyboard blows upon the space marked Your Review.

Bunch 4

From even a few lines, the dread Foe recoils. An Oblivion Slayer called Navaron simply wrote, “Great book, well written and extremely engaging. Bonus, it is all about bears!!!! Marvellous !!!!!!!”

So possibly errr … (shuffles, looks about) … something nice like that? Lots of exclamation marks are not necessarily required.

Do you count more bold Readers among your boon companions? Share on this missive so that they too may do these valiant deeds!  We writers (and one writer-bear) will never disavow your selfless mission!

 

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps). and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In  from Publisherobscura.com .

 

Octopus and Family, by Annabelle Lee: review

Mawson’s Guardian writes: When I finally got Octopus and Family away from Mawson (waited for him to nap), I poured myself a coffee and had a look myself. I may be a Grownup but I LIKE picture books.

OctopusMawson This little book is full of puns both written and drawn. The first page introduces Octopus. I flicked to the next. There was a splutter of laughter from someone in the room. Was that me? I chortled at “Loctopus ”. And, really,  who could resist the lovely “Froctopus”?  “Xylopus” tickled me. Who knew octopuses, sorry, octopi, could be such fun.

 You know what puns are like: many will unexpectedly hit the spot for you and others will set off your (grownup) friends. Can you work out what “Octovist” is, for instance?   Mind you, trying to explain some of the jokes to little ones (and to your hug of bears) could get you into a world of bother. But then why should only the kids get all the picture books? This one is for you.

I’m sure these puns will cheer up anyone. It will make a fun gift for your friends (remember keep one for you.) Ask your friendly bookshop to get hold of it. Or plonk a paw on the blue stuff here to get it, with free delivery too, from Book Depository.

It’s at Odyssey Books, home of beautiful and whimsical novelty and gift books. (While you’re there, look about for a bear you know!)

By following her Facebook page  you can see news about Annabelle Lee’s next book for grownups (that’s you). On Instagram   you can  peek at more Octopii. Is Bachelorette-Opus perhaps anyone you recognize?

Where to find it: BookDepository, and Amazon and more.
Book info:
Published May 2017 as paperback (ISBN: 978-1-922200-84-6). Now available in hardcover ( 978-1-922200-85-3).

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps) and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

‘Great book, well written and extremely engaging. Bonus it is all about bears!!!!
Marvellous !!!!!!!’  Reviewer Navaron on Amazon.

 

Review by Jackie Law of: It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In

A lovely review of Mawson Bear’s very first book, from the wonderful book blog Never Imitate, hosted by Jackie Law.

‘Today I review a book that is a little different to my normal fare. Sent to me all the way from Australia, although available to buy in the UK, It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In is a 50 page picture book suitable for anyone who sometimes feels confused and lonely in our beautiful world.’

Read on at Never Imitate. There are grand reviews there of more books too.

Where to find it:  You can  plonk your paw here to order it here through Book Depository (free shipping all over the world). Also at Amazon and Abebooks.com and Goodreads.com and, oh! all over the place.

Mawson’s next book is called ‘She Ran Away From Love’, and will be ready to be in your paws in 2019.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps) and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In from Publisherobscura.com.   

 

neverimitate

Today I review a book that is a little different to my normal fare. Sent to me all the way from Australia, although available to buy in the UK, It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In is a 50 page picture book suitable for anyone who sometimes feels confused and lonely in our beautiful world.

Narrated by a sleuth of teddy bears, led by the fluffy author, Mawson, it ponders how one’s importance to a special Some One can change over time. It accepts the pain of loss, makes suggestions about how to cope, and offers hope for future happiness.

The opening premise is that everyone wants to be loved and to have their love appreciated. There is still so much love on offer in our big, bright world.

The problem can be finding that special Some One when the world is so big. We can be primed and…

View original post 343 more words

The Tedettes Jane Austen Book Club: Home life at Chawton House

Dear baffled readers, As everyone knows, while no-one is about bears will get their paws on books.

The Tedettes found “A Portrait of Jane Austen by David Cecil and “The Prince of Pleasure and His Regency” by JB Priestly.  They learn more about Jane Austen’s life and times.

BearsreadBooksAusten8 small 2092

In 1809, Jane and her sister Cassandra went to live in Chawton House. Jane wrote a verse about it.

BearsreadBooksAusten11 small 2101

In the next picture you see the stairway in the Regent’s London dwelling called Carlton House. Next to it is the vestibule in the house when Jane and Cassandra Austen lived.BearsreadBooksAusten10 small 2098

And here is the parlour at Chawton House

BearsreadBooksAusten12 small 2104

Cassandra Austen’s skill was in drawing. Here is her water colour of Fanny Knight, her niece.

BearsreadBooksAusten9 small 2096

The Tedettes so enjoyed reading Jane Austen’s books that they are going to read other books. They’re discussing whether to call themselves ” The Tedettes Jane Austen Bookclub That Reads Other Things.” And oh look – they’ve discovered the novels of Georgette Heyer.

Amazon Links: “The Prince of Pleasure and His Regency” by JB Priestly.

 AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps) and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

“Just pure magic.  A bear’s love is never far away and can be shared and passed on through generations.” Susan Hampson, of Books From Dawn To Dusk.

 

‘It is a Truth Universally Acknowledged’: The Tedette’s Jane Austen Book Club

“It is a truth universally acknowledged,
that whenever a book club chooses a subject to read,
someone will bring the wrong book.”

BearsreadBooksAusten6 Small 2088

Dear fellow baffled readers,

It is grand to see so many bears reading books when no-one is looking. Here’s our bunch again enjoying Jane Austen novels, including Emma, Mansfield Park , Northanger Abbey,  Sense and Sensibility , Women Who Run With the Wolves ..  What?  Wolves? What has Professor Caddy brought along?

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps) and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

“Just pure magic.  A bear’s love is never far away and can be shared and passed on through generations.” Susan Hampson, of Books From Dawn To Dusk.

‘I Must Keep My Own Style’. The Tedettes Jane Austen Bookclub

The Tedettes are thrilled to find a letter written by their heroine in 1815. It’s to the personal librarian of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales. Fancy having a personal librarian!

The prince was the Regent. That means he was the king in disguise.  At the time the King himself was not being allowed to do any king-ing. And although the Prince was doing all the king-ing instead, he was not allowed to call himself King. It was all a bit of a muddle.

Known as the ‘Prince of Pleasure’, he liked good things, especially food and drink, and nice colours and grand books – just like us bears really, and, and he was very plump. Again, like us bears.BearsreadBooksAusten4 small 2084

Among the Good Things he admired were Jane Austen’s novels. As a mark of his regard he invited her to inspect his London residence, Carlton House, although as it happened wasn’t there that day, due to his getting plumper somewhere else.

So, Miss Austen was shown about by Mr Clarke, the personal librarian. Mr Clarke conveyed the Royal Desire that she dedicate her next novel, Emma, to his Princely Regent-ness.  Miss Austen was not keen because she did not like the Prince’s way of king-ing. But, mindful of the proprieties, she did so.

Later the Regent, through Mr Clark, also suggested she write “an historical romance, illustrative of the august house of Coburg” to come out in time for the marriage of Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coberg to the Prince’s daughter, Charlotte.

Most writers of the day would have jumped at the chance to gain favour. But Jane Austen sent this devastatingly polite reply.

To the highest man (or bear) in the Kingdom, she says, “No”.

“No, I must keep to my own style and go my own way”.

This text is from a book called Great Letters of History.  And you can learn a lot about the Regent from The Prince of Pleasure and His Regency, by JB Priestly – who himself was a sort of bear too.

Bafflingly, bears, if you search on the Inter-Webs for the words ‘Prince of Pleasure’ you will find lots of books where the gentlemen seem to have … errrr … mislaid their shirts. And sometimes the gentlemen, who are not plump at all, seem to be mislaying other clothes all over the place. Just so you know.

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps) and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

“Just pure magic.  A bear’s love is never far away and can be shared and passed on through generations.” Susan Hampson, of Books From Dawn To Dusk.

The Tedettes Jane Austen Book Club finds Jane’s History of England

The Tedettes are fascinated by Jane Austen’s History of England, written when she was 16 years old. Bearsreadbooksausten 3 small

Cassandra Austen illustrated the pages. People entertained themselves this way, bears. There were no Bright-Box-Things to stare at!

Bearsreadbooksausten 4 small

Jane and Cassandra had strong favourites among the kings and queens. They were very stern about those they disliked.

Bearsreadbooksausten 5 small

The Tedettes’ copy is a facsimile version brought out by Folio Books. You can see Miss Austen’s own handwriting. A book perhaps more easy for you to find contains this History and other writings of the young Jane Austen, and is called “Sanditon, Lady Susan, & The History of England : The Juvenilia and Shorter Works of Jane Austen“.

AbeBooks. Thousands of booksellers - millions of books.

You are in the web den of Mawson Bear, Ponderer of Baffling Things (between naps) and Writer-Bear of It’s A Bright World To Feel Lost In .

“Just pure magic.  A bear’s love is never far away and can be shared and passed on through generations.” Susan Hampson, of Books From Dawn To Dusk.