Friday, February 11, 2011

Penguin Classics Cloth Bound Collection

I have been reminded of late that I have been sadly remiss in keeping up with my blog this past month. My sincere apologies to those who have noticed and have taken the time out to send me a message. I am gratified to know that I have at least a few devoted followers. Thank you guys!

I have found myself in a bit of a hibernation since the New Year. With the shortening of the days, I have had little opportunity to explore the city after work and many of my habitual crafty projects have been temporarily set aside while I completed my graduate school application. You will be glad to know that the application was mailed off last week, and I am ready to get back into my routine.

Throughout my somewhat drawn out dormancy, I have busied myself during the long, dark evenings by reading and re-reading some of my favorite classic novels. Revisiting Oddysseus's long trials and tribulations in Homer's Oddysey, reliving Heathcliff's monstrous passion and hatred for his life-long love Catherine in Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights and discovering the hardships a young woman can endure in her whole-hearted love for an absent, unloving husband in Tess of the D'Ubervilles by Thomas Hardy have been the relish of many an evening hour.

I have been slowly working on building up my library, much to my own detriment as I will be lugging all of my volumes across state lines in a few short months. I have never been able to heed my own warnings about the breadth of my ever-increasing collection, and have of late, fallen for a brand new temptation. Up until a few months ago, my precious classic stories were found in tattered and creased Barnes and Noble's paperbacks and the few vintage volumes I have been able to find in the over-searched shelves of New York's antiquarian bookstores.

In 2008, Penguin Classics, an imprint of Penguin Books, started releasing incredibly beautiful cloth bound editions of some of my most precious novels. For a long time, these editions were only available in England but thanks to America's need for, well everything, the beautiful books have been appearing with increasing frequency of the past year. As it stands, 20 different books are available in the states of authors ranging from Dante and Shakespeare to Jane Austen and the Brontë sisters.

The books are lovely compact size cloth-bound editions with bright and charming covers. Cover designs and intro page illustrations were created by Coralie Bickford Smith. Upon first encountering these charming volumes, I made a pact with myself to only read novels that are available in this edition until I have a copy of each one. Collecting these books have been among my main occupations these past few months and I am happy to share them with you.

Check back in with me in the coming weeks for updates on my paintings and other creations that I have failed to properly update with in the past month.


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