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The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen
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The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen

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3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  1,049 ratings  ·  248 reviews
The minute I saw the letter, I knew it was hers. There was no mistaking it: the salutation, the tiny, precise handwriting, the date, the content itself, all confirmed its ancient status and authorship…
Samantha McDonough cannot believe her eyes--or her luck. Tucked in an uncut page of a two-hundred-year old poetry book is a letter she believes was written by Jane Austen,
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Paperback, 422 pages
Published December 31st 2012 by Penguin Group (USA) (first published December 1st 2012)
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Joann
Why did this book have to end? Rather, why did the book within the book have to end? Could have read these forever. Perhaps, if we are all very lucky,they will find another manuscript hidden within the walls of Greenbrier. I will be ready to read it.
Sara Palacios
I received a copy of The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen by Syrie James in exchange for an honest review.

The book begins as Samantha McDonough stumbles upon a letter tucked away in an uncut page of a two-hundred-year old poetry book. She instantly recognizes the salutation, the handwriting, and the content as an old piece from the infamous Jane Austen. Although the discovery is quite amazing, Samantha finally reads the letter and the content is even better – it claims that there is a missing m
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Marie
Jan 10, 2013 Marie rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
4.5 stars really =) lol

BUT .. awesome read for Austen fans!
I had not read any of Syrie James' work before, but after reading her newest novel she has me sold on her writing skills. This novel comprises of a novel within a novel as we are treated to the contemporary story of Samantha who hunts down and discovers that there is an unpublished story written by Jane Austen. She then has to beg the sexy owner to do the right thing and allow the work to be published. (While fighting her attraction to
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Chelsea
Eh. There wasn't much to this book, so there won't be much to this review.

Basically: modern day woman buys old book, finds what might be a letter from Jane Austen referencing a lost manuscript, engages in lots of awkward exposition with various other characters, goes searching for said manuscript, meets fine-looking gentleman, finds manuscript, reads manuscript, small drama to justify modern-day framework, neatly wrapped-up bad-rom-com ending.

The only reason this book got more than one star out
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Aimee
This book was not what I expected at all. I thought most of the book would be a mystery involving finding the missing manuscript of Jane Austen, I was very surprised to find that the manuscript is found relatively early in the book and that most of the book involved the reading of the manuscript.

Even though it was not the story I thought I would be reading I thoroughly enjoyed it. James does an excellent job with the manuscript and it really felt like a Jane Austen story. I found myself flying t
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Juliet-Camille
description

This is a typical "book-within-a-book" novel, and as such I found myself liking one section of the story far more than the other. In this case, I really enjoyed the missing/stollen story of Rebecca Stanhope far more than I liked the telling of how modern day Austen schooler Samantha discovered it.

I think the novel would have been much stronger if the author had committed fully to the manuscript angle and added a forward/afterward via a fictional character explaining the novels discovery and sub
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N.
Complete reversal of opinion, in the midst of this book. The story of a woman who discovers a letter written by Jane Austen that eventually leads to uncovering a missing manuscript, I started out enjoying the modern portion more, even though I thought it was a bit flat. The "story within a story" didn't sound like authentic Austen, to me, at least linguistically.

As I kept reading, though, the plot of the Austen manuscript discovered in this novel sounded more and more like an Austen plot. And,
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Christina
In such days as this, of on-line Jane Austen fan fiction, self-publishing, and perusing the stacks in traditional brick and mortar bookstores, it is incomprehensible to neglect reading the manifold of Jane Austen spin-offs, what-ifs and other such Austen inspired musings. Those of us Austen addicts simply cannot get enough of her—and oftentimes inhale all we can in self-indulgent reading binges… in search of that same rush, that wonderful, satisfying moment we experienced upon discovering her f ...more
Meredith (Austenesque Reviews)
Jane Austen must have had some secrets. With information about her life being “famously scarce”1 and a large majority of her correspondence being destroyed and censored, one can understandably make the conjecture that there are some things the Austen family did not want the world to know about dear Jane. But the unanswered question remains: what did they not want the world to know? Love affairs? Painful hardships? Illness? What are the secrets of Jane Austen's life?

Critically acclaimed and best-
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Maria Grazia
I must admit that with this new novel Syrie James has surpassed herself and moved forward even respect to a successful achievement like The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen. She did a brilliant job both at delivering a well-designed plot echoing Jane Austen’s voice - but modernizing it for a present-day audience - and at enclosing it in an intriguing frame of quest and romance.

Samantha is an American librarian who had to give up her Ph D in English Literature while preparing a dissertation on Jane Au
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Lilyane
Reading this book was like opening a gift and peeling away the tissue paper layer by layer - it just kept getting better and better. And in the same way Sam and Anthony couldn't keep from reading booklet after booklet, I kept turning page after page and found each one better than the one before.

"The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen" is a book within a book, time travel from the current day to Jane Austen's early 1800's. Somehow, Syrie James is able to make the reader comfortable in both centuri
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Jolene
The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen by Syrie James was an absolutely delightful novel. I am impressed with how well-executed this concept was with regards to her writing style. I was so drawn in that I had trouble putting the book down when I had to. It took me no time to fly through the 410 pages!

This novel is a book-within-a-book format. Perhaps around 300-350 pages are actually dedicated to the manuscript itself that the main modern-day character Samantha searches for and discovers. I wasn'
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Myonlycookie
Mar 10, 2013 Myonlycookie rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Janeites, Regency Romance fans, Historical fiction fans
Shelves: regency
Overall enjoyment: 4
Writing style: 4

After reading The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen, I couldn't wait to start this one. It did not disappoint, but I think this book is primarily for Jane fans, or literary nerds (i.e. people who would geek out over the sheer premise of finding a missing manuscript of a beloved author). Many of the themes also resonated personally for me.

I would honestly read this spoiler first (it's not really a spoiler, gives away no plot points, just a note about style): (view sp
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Jay
THE MISSING MANUSCRIPT OF JANE AUSTEN is a novel within a novel, much like the Pink Carnation series by Lauren Willig, so if you like Willig's books, it's likely that you may like this one as well. The book starts out with Samantha McDonough, a special collections librarian, discovering a handwritten letter by Jane Austen stuck inside a book of poetry she bought at a used book store while on vacation in London. Even though she's supposed to be flying out in a couple of days, she goes on a quest ...more
Christine Rebbert
The jacket makes it sound like the whole book is going to be the story of searching for the missing manuscript, but actually, the manuscript is found early on, and most of the rest of the book IS the manuscript of an earlier, totally unknown work by Jane Austen. Syrie James really has Austen down pat; you could easily believe it was in fact written by Austen back in the early 1800's. The story-within-the-story is perhaps more melodramatic and broader than Austen's actual works, but that it shoul ...more
Gabrielle
One of the perks of working at a library is that you find new title and authors that you have never heard of before. While perusing our new fiction shelf, I came across this one.......Now anything remotely smelling of Jane Austen gets my attention.

It's a great story--it is of a young woman who finds a hidden letter that points to their being an unfinished work of Austen lying around. Her search takes her to a country estate in England where she meets the owner....who at first strikes her as unfr
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Valerie
I finished this book in the very early morning hours... and thoroughly LOVED it! It's a story within a story, starting in present day London and moving into very early 1800's Devonshire. There were so many similarities in the characters of this book compared to those of Austen's novels. Right off the bat, some of these similarities jumped off the pages at me: Mrs. Harcourt reminds me of Mrs. Jennings (humorous; talks about everything/everyone!); Mr. Spangle as Mr. Collins (obviously!!); Miss Dav ...more
Mullgirl
May 29, 2013 Mullgirl rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Austen fans
Hmmm. I don't ordinarily write up a review, but I feel somewhat compelled to do so. The book is very well-written. I like her style--I especially like how you can feel the flavor of the book within a book. I can almost believe that Jane wrote the Stanhopes instead of Syrie. In fact, my favorite part of the book is the Stanhopes story. It's delightful--I like the change of fortunes/circumstances so well. Of course, you can see from miles away who will ultimately be Miss Stanhope's life partner, b ...more
Lyn Liza
I've always loved Syrie James' works, although I only had a chance in reading the Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen and a chapter in that book about Charlotte Bronte. This book had started me in high hopes that I will find this one equally interesting and gripping and I haven't been mistaken.

The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen is a novel within a novel. Samantha, a librarian in a university in L.A., bought a book where she found a missing letter of Jane Austen to her sister Cassandra while on a hol
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Dani C. (Paulette's Papers)
I was very pleasantly surprised at how much I loved The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen. I am a huge Jane Austen fan so I was just hoping that this would be an enjoyable book. What I did not expect was a captivating story that I had trouble putting down!

Samantha is revisiting England while her boyfriend is in medical conferences all day. As an American librarian who once attended Oxford it is no wonder she went shopping in a bookstore where she came across an old book of poetry. As she looks a
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Staci

My very first thought after finishing this book was that I was so sad that it had to come to an end. Syrie James transported me back in time with her lovely book, The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte, and I have to say that she did it again with this story. I adored the Stanhopes and was absolutely captivated by Rebecca. I absolutely loved the way James set the plot and how she introduces this lost manuscript of Jane's into the current time. The story never lags and at times I honestly thought
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Tarran
I really enjoyed this book. It has given me a greater appreciation for the works of Jane Austen. The novel moves along quite nicely and you get to fall inlove with all the characters at your own pace. In fact you come away thinking that there really was a missing manuscript from Jane Austen. Samantha and Anthony have great chemistry and work really well together in finding the missing manuscript. You actually have two books in one as we are also reading about the life of Rebecca Stanhope and her ...more
Hoover Public Library Adult Fiction
After finding an old book of poems in a London bookshop, Austen-scholar-turned-librarian Samantha McDonough makes the discovery of a lifetime: tucked inside is a letter penned by none other than Jane Austen. It alludes to an unknown manuscript, supposedly lost while visiting a country estate with her family, long before she became a literary star. Alternating between the present-day search of Sam and Greenbriar owner Anthony Whitaker and the contents of the manuscript, James’ novel is a delightf ...more
Gaile
2013 is starting out with so many good books. So far since the year turned I haven't read so many good books I am hard put to choose one as the best for a certain month!
This one is again an excellent read. Although I have shelved it under time travel, it is actually two books in one. A couple find a missing manuscript written by Jane Austen in an antiquated house in England. As they proceed to read the novel out loud to each other, we are sent back to the regency period in a novel within this no
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Elizabeth
I found this a interesting concept... a book within a book. The weird thing was that I loved reading the newly discovered novel but really had a harder time with the main frame of the story which was still well written but just not as enjoyable or interesting to me, mainly because it seemed to be a little too predictable. Having said that, I enjoyed how the two stories mirrored each other at times and found that I read through this quickly because I couldn't wait to find out what was in store fo ...more
Brittney
I enjoyed this book, but as others have said, I preferred "The Stanhopes" over the modern story woven throughout. The modern story started out kind of interesting and then merely became the means to an end in order to publish a book in the same vein as Austen's others. Still enjoyable, just too predictable. "The Stanhopes" was well-done and I felt as if it was another Austen novel, borrowing elements from all of the published six that exist. Overall, worth reading and now I want to go and re-rea ...more
Patti
The format of this story was done really well: a story within a story. It definitely kept my attention.

While perusing a bookstore in London, Samantha finds a very old poetry book that has an old letter tucked in it. Upon reading it, Sam, an expert on Jane Austen, is sure it was written be the famed author. Mentioned in the letter is a manuscript “that went missing during a visit to Greenbriar in Devonshire”.

Samantha is immediately hooked into the hunt for the missing manuscript and sets out to
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Sariah
I actually found this in the mystery section of the library and for the life of me don't know why it's categorized that way. I was looking for something else, but with Jane Austen in the title you know I had to try it. This is actually two stories. We start with Sam, who finds a letter from Jane Austen and refers to a lost manuscript she had written, so Sam goes on the hunt. (Maybe that's the mystery part?) I honestly thought there would be more to this, but to my surprise Sam quickly finds the ...more
Ananya Mandal
What a novel idea!! Fell in love with the premise of the book. It is fairly well written especially the parallel book within book purportedly written by Austen. The Plan by Austen herself at the end is a delight. However the downside of the book was the relative two dimensionness of the characters. The heroine seemed too good and the potential hero seemed too right in the end...the love story deserved a bit more. Overall a very goodread!
Helen
This book is about ***1/2 stars for me. It was a worthy read but I am a bit biased in this genre. However, I feel James did a worthy job with the Stanhopes story ... using character traits from other Austen novels, some may find it predictable, however, for Janeites who drink this stuff up it was delightful. I think the modern day story needed a bit more working on but overall a worthy read for any Janeite!
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Syrie James is the bestselling author of nine critically acclaimed novels, including Jane Austen's First Love, The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen, The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen, The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte, Nocturne, Dracula My Love, Forbidden, and The Harrison Duet: Songbird and Propositions. Her books have been translated into eighteen foreign languages.

Syrie was named after a ch
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More about Syrie James...
Forbidden The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen Dracula, My Love: The Secret Journals of Mina Harker The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Brontë Nocturne

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