Kathryne's Reviews > The Jane Austen Book Club

The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler
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's review
Feb 09, 2010

it was ok
bookshelves: family-book-club
Read in February, 2009

Family book club selection for February 2009 - Kimberley's recommendation.

This is one of those rare instances where I enjoyed the movie more than the book (perhaps because I saw the movie first but really I didn’t care for the book as much as I thought I would). The book was choppy – the character’s stories are told in short spurts with each chapter focusing primarily on one character and one Austen novel – which, to me, prevented the character’s relationships from intertwining on paper in the way they did in the movie. Also, the story was sometimes told in 3rd person, sometimes in 1st person, and sometimes even in 2nd. I think the author was attempting to make us, as the readers feel like we were actually a part of the book club but every time the voice changed I got confused as to who was speaking and I’d have go back a paragraph or two to figure it out.

What I liked most about the book and the movie – GRIGG – who doesn’t love Grigg?

One reason I typically like books better than movies is that books have so much more information about the characters. The two things I did like discovering in the book was exactly how Jocelyn and Sylvia became friends and reading Daniel’s letter to Sylvia.

This was the final read for our family Jane Austen Book Club. We will be continuing the book club but will be breaking away from our Jane Austen theme and branching out to other books, although we may visit some of the millions of Austen spin-off novels. Let me know if you have any favorites.

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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Esther (new)

Esther I have read several Austen spin-offs and didn't like most of them. Here are the 3 best that I have read out of those many: I really like Austenland by Shannon Hale which isn't a spin-off but more of a fun tribute. I also like Fitzwilliam Darcy, A Gentleman which is a trilogy based on P&P from his perspective but have issue with the 2nd book. Then Amanda Grange has a series of 'diaries' from the perspective of the hero for each Austen book but don't read Mr. Knightley's it was horrible.

message 2: by Esther (new)

Esther I didn't like the movie very much the first time I saw it but happen to see it again and enjoyed it more...so was considering the book now but I believe I will skip it after your review.

message 3: by Kristen (new)

Kristen I agree with Esther. Austenland is a cute chick flick in a book, light and fun. Pamela Aidan's "Fitzwilliam Darcy, A Gentleman" is an excellent version of the story. The second book in the series gets a little weird, but explains his renewed fervor to gain Elizabeth's favor in the last book. I also like the expansion on Darcy's relationship with Georgiana.

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