February 11, 2009

Freesia and Great Loves

I can't think of a better time for injecting a little romance into one's life than the week leading up to Valentine's Day. And I don't mean in the bedroom sort of romance. I'm talking about enhancing the subtle nuances of the everyday with a little glamour. For me, it's buying a lovely freesia bouquet, the color and smell of which I find just intoxicating.

It's also losing myself in the romantic entanglements and intrigues of a great love story, which sounds just about right at this time of year. I bought these books from the Penguin Great Loves series ages ago, and I can't wait to dust them off and dive into them tonight. I chose Thomas Hardy's A Mere Interlude, Leo Tolstoy's The Kreutzer Sonata, and Forbidden Fruit from the letters of Abelard and Heloise. I don't think I've mentioned this before, but I am *OBSESSED with Penguin Classics UK. They come out with terrific editions of classic books with the most compelling covers which either aren't available in the states or are extremely hard to find. Needless to say, this only provokes my lust for them even more. If you're at all interested in how the cover designs were created for the above books, then by all means click here!

*Another reason I'm in love with Penguin: I read this Valentine's Day essay by Victoria Coren years ago and its humor and insight have longed stayed with me. Regardless if you're single or attached, it makes for a great Valentine's Day read. Doesn't hurt that the authors she writes of are Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte, two of my favorites.


Anonymous said...

Gorgeous flowers and gorgeous books! I've not seen those covers before and now I'm craving them. Perfect for that literary longing that should characterize every Valentine's Day. Bronte and Austen are some of my faves too---I could re-read their perfect love stories over and over again (and have!)

please sir said...

Oh those flowers and books are sooo pretty!

Mary-Laure said...

I also have a few of those Penguin Great Loves volumes! I just adore their design - I blogged about them last year.
And I am also a HUGE HUGE HUGE fan of Penguin in general. I love getting their really old editions, you know, with the orange covers?

And of course I adore freesias...

It's almost weird how many things we have in common!

Joanna said...

Citysage: You're SO right about the literary longing on Valentine's Day. I guess great literature, like great loves, can be so fulfilling.

Please sir: Glad you agree!

Mary-Laure: Great minds....I haven't come across too many of the old Penguin editions, which is regretful because they're usually much more chic than their modern counterparts.