With so much mystery surrounding Jane Austen's private life, this novel by Syrie James was a joy to get lost in.
Written as though an old journal of MsWith so much mystery surrounding Jane Austen's private life, this novel by Syrie James was a joy to get lost in.
Written as though an old journal of Ms. Austen's had been discovered in an attic of an old cottage, the reader is taken on a delightful and heartbreaking journey into an intimate part of Jane Austen's life that academics and readers alike have speculated about for generations.
If Jane Austen wrote of love and romance why did she never marry? She had received several marriage proposals throughout her life and yet refused all her suitors. In The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen, James explores the idea that she fell in love with a man who could have rescued her, her mother, and sister Cassandra from utter poverty, but through tragic circumstances was forever parted from him. And because of this heartbreak Jane Austen was able to pour herself into some of her greatest works: Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, and Persuasion....more
Of the Jane Austen novels I have read thus far, this was my least favorite. The character of Franny is just too righteous when comparedMansfield Park:
Of the Jane Austen novels I have read thus far, this was my least favorite. The character of Franny is just too righteous when compared to Elizabeth Bennet or Marianne Dashwood. Though I realize that author's have the freedom to create differences in their characters, this seems to be more than that. As I was reading the novel, it did not seem to be written by the same woman who wrote Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, or even Persuasion. The characters are flat, with the exception of the Crawfords. Without them to stir the pot, the story would have felt more like a stagnant river rather than the flowing wit of other Austen stories. Franny was a character that I had a difficult time identifying with because she is written without fault. A women with her past and childhood would have more ghosts in the closet.
Ultimately, I would have to say I found this story irritating. Perfect characters create a wall between them and the reader. It is difficult to invest in a plot when the reader is not interested in the happenings of the heroine, or hero for that matter. ...more
How many times have we found ourselves in new situations and wish we could go back to the way things were? Like a typical Jane Austen novel, this bookHow many times have we found ourselves in new situations and wish we could go back to the way things were? Like a typical Jane Austen novel, this book takes its time building the characters of the story. Jane Mansfield finds herself in 21st century L.A. and in the body of Courtney Stone. Through mishaps and ignorant bliss, Jane finds that walking in Courtney's shoes allows her to experience a life she would otherwise have missed.
What I enjoyed most about this story was that it did not end the way I expected. I liked that Jane remained in the modern world rather than "waking up" back in the past once she had fixed Courtney's mess of a life. I also wasn't expecting the overall theme of the book to be that one cannot live in the past, but must live in the present and move forward. ...more
As a whole I felt the novel gave an interesting insight into the life that we as readers of Jane Austen will never know of her true character. I appreAs a whole I felt the novel gave an interesting insight into the life that we as readers of Jane Austen will never know of her true character. I appreciated her harsh judgments on people and how they showed up as characters in her novels. I know in my own thinking of Jane Austen I see her as being perfectly content with her life as a writer and never even considered that she more than likely dealt with depression and discontentment. On the pages of this book readers see a very raw and unforgiving Jane.
For readers who are curious about reading a novel that focuses on the private Jane Austen in the years in which so much mystery surrounds her leading up to her death. I would recommend this book. It creates a world in which two sisters had to survive: one living through the characters of her writing, and the other living as the confidant of her sister and caretaker of the family....more