New Books!

I’m not sure if it’s because Wordsworth classics are always so affordable, or if it’s due to Christmas season sales, but the four books above only cost a total of $25 AUD, which is still cheaper than one ordinary (i.e. contemporary/newly-released) paperback. Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy is $32.50, and Midnight’s Children by Salmaan Rushdie is $27.95. Grr, how ridiculously overpriced! These books were sort of a splurge. I went with the intention of buying shoes and some summer dresses – anything but books because I have several untouched books on my shelf – but the bookstore was conveniently nearby, so how could I have resisted?

Justification 1: I had no need to buy summer dresses either, because I have several unworn dresses and pairs of shoes lying in my closet.

Justification 2: These do not add to my TBR list, technically speaking, because all of them are from various challenges and projects. The Forsyte Saga and The Age of Innocence are on my A to Z list, and I put Agnes Grey down for the 18th – 19th Century Women Writers challenge. And Dickens is part of an ongoing project, in which I pledged to read his complete works (a decision I am beginning to sorely regret)

Justification 3: they were cheap!

Justification 4: It’s almost Christmas. I know I shouldn’t use Christmas as an excuse to justify my consumeristic rampaging, but everyone deserves a little book-pampering now and then.

Anyway, I’m glad Wordsworth are starting to comprehend the importance of cover design. The Wharton one has a particularly nice cover that is reminiscent of Art Deco. I like it. Nothing can beat Penguin, of course – they are the masters of paperback repackaging – but Wordsworth is getting better.


15 thoughts on “New Books!

  1. You’re in for a treat with all of these. The Forsyte Saga is one of my all time favorite classics – but so is The Age of Innocence. There’s a wonderful movie version of that, too, with Michelle Pfeiffer.

    Great choices!

  2. I have not read the Forsyte Saga, but I saw the PBS miniseries–very dramatic. It made me want to read the book(s?) I also would like to read everything by Dickens. Sometimes I think I need to dedicate a year just for his novels in order to get to them all!

  3. Becca – I’m really looking forward to The Age of Innocence and The Forsyte Saga! I’ve been meaning to read Wharton for a while now. I don’t know anything at all about The Forsyte Saga though, so I’m waiting in anticipation

    Chain Reader – Hm, I haven’t seen the PBS mini-series. In fact, I’d never even heard about the Forsyte Saga until I found it randomly on some blog and put it down for the A to Z challenge.

    Dickens did write a lot of novels; I should have checked that before I pledged to read every single one of them!

  4. I loved the Age of Innocence! But I haven’t read the others. How fun!

    I also found that books in Australia were far too expensive! I actually ordered books from the USA via Amazon and paid for shipping; it actually ended up being cheaper in the long run. Of course, that was three months ago when the exchange rate was significantly different. But finding a great deal is so much better!

  5. Rebecca – wow, Australian books must be reaaaaally overpriced if online purchases plus shipping turned out to be cheaper. There’s always the library, I suppose… but I just like to buy books! :)

  6. I see no problem with buying books. Everybody needs a new book or four every once and while. I loved Agnes Grey but couldn’t get into The Age of Innocence. Hopefully, you’ll have better luck.

  7. Well, this was a bit of a problem because I bought a whole stack of books only a week and a half ago, and I still have several unread books on my shelf! That’s not to mention the library loans I have, which are about to expire…

    I think I’m going to love Agnes Grey too; the Bronte sisters are among my favourite authors :)
    As for ‘Age of Innocence’, I took a peek the other day and I liked Wharton’s style so hopefully I will have better luck

    Thanks for dropping by!

  8. Wow–those really are inexpensive books. I visited the Wordsworth Classics website ( and was surprised at the prices. I prefer Oxford Classics because I like the notes and the intro, which I don’t read until after I’ve read the big if it’s my first time. Do the WW Classics have notes and an intro?

    I tend to visit my local used bookstore–I suspect I’m the only one who ever buys the classics, but the ladies there have a good selection. If I’m not sure I wil like the book I will borrow it from the library, but there are certain authors for whom I honor by owning everything they ever wrote!

  9. I own one book published by Oxford classics – they dono’t really sell those where I live; it’s mostly Penguin and Wordsworth.

    WW Classics do have introductions and notes, but they’re rather brief in comparison to the Penguins.
    It’s really true that you get what you pay for, because WW sometimes publish outdated translations. Also, with the larger books, like Les Miserables they simply minimise the font-size until it’s almost unreadable.

    Can’t always guarantee the best reading experience with WW, but I think they’re still good value :)

  10. ‘Agnes Grey’ and ‘The Age of Innocence’ are wonderful. Have only read the first of the nine Forsyte books, which I enjoyed, but it’s no Edith Wharton.

    At one point, when I was feeling very annoyed at America about something, I realised that when you’re simultaneously…
    1. reading an Edith Wharton book
    2. Listening to 70s funk music
    3. drinking scotch and Coke
    …you have to realise America has produced much that is wonderful.

  11. There are NINE Forsyte books?! I must only have bought the first three then. Am looking forward to reading Wharton so, so much. I’ve been hearing only good things about her books.

    I have those moments too, where I realise I’ve only been reading British and American literature. That’s when I try, for a while, to immerse myself in Australian books – but it is hard to escape America when their stuff is everywhere, from our supermarkets to our bookshelves.

  12. Some Australian books to gobble : All of Henry Handel Richardson and Christina Stead, Hal Porter’s Watcher on the Cast Iron Balcony, Xavier Herbert’s Capricornia…umm…Elliott Careful, He Might Hear You, Franklin My Brilliant Career, Johnston My Brother Jack, Manning The Middle Parts of Fortune

  13. Bookeboy – thanks for the suggestions! I don’t think I’ve read any of those, although I watched Company B’s production of Capricornia a few years ago (I think it was 2006?)

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