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Exhibition marks 200th anniversary of Austen's 'Emma'

The two hundredth anniversary of one of Jane Austen's most famous novels is being celebrated in Hampshire. The author, who was born in Steventon a few miles from Abingdon in Oxfordshire, wrote 'Emma' in the village of Chawton near Alton. A special exhibition is being held at Chawton House library.

Emma at 200: from English Village to Global Appeal, opens today and marks the novel's global appeal and its enduring popularity.

"Jane Austen's Emma is often considered to be the most 'accomplished' of her novels, and it's the one that is truly inspired by her setting of 'three or four families in a country village'."

– Dr Gillian Dow, Executive Director of Chawton House Library and University of Southampton Associate Professor in English

Items on show include an English first edition of the novel, a first edition from America and a first French translation - both published in 1816. The story has featured on television and film, as well as being adapted to a modern day setting as the inspiration for a Hollywood film.

The exhibition continues at Chawton House Library until Sunday 25th September.

More details here.

"Many people are surprised that England's Jane Austen was published in countries beyond England in her own lifetime - she had no idea, of course, that Emma was in Paris booksellers in 1816.

"Certainly her popularity accelerated in the 20th and 21st century making Jane Austen the global phenomenon she is today. I am delighted to be organising and hosting this exhibition to help reflect this novel's impact worldwide."

– Dr Gillian Dow, Curator of exhibition

Books, babies and being a child star: John Gordon Sinclair talks to ITV Meridian about life after "Gregory's Girl"

Now, Whitstable's well known for pulling in the crowds when it comes to putting on events. And this weekend it's hoping to put the town on the map again with a brand new literary festival.

Headlining WhitLit will be the child star turned crime writer John Gordon Sinclair, who shot to fame when he starred in the film "Gregory's Girl". He's been talking to Andrea Thomas about books, babies and life as a young star.


Novelist William Boyd to take on 'James Bond'

Ian Fleming, the writer of the original James Bond novels lived at St Margarets near Dover in Kent. The codename 007 was actually the number of the bus from Dover in Kent to London.

Ian Fleming died in 1964. Since his death authors including Kingsley Amis and Sebastian Faulks have penned James Bond novels.

William Boyd who wrote 'A Good Man in Africa' is to write the next James Bond novel. He has not revealed the plot but says the book will be set in 1969.