Sharon's Reviews > Jane Austen's Charlotte: Her Fragment of a Last Novel, Completed by Julia Barrett

Jane Austen's Charlotte by Julia Barrett
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Dec 24, 09

bookshelves: austen, historical-fiction
Read in April, 2009

** spoiler alert ** Charlotte, Julia Barrett’s continuation of Jane Austen's Sanditon I found to be very disappointing. The plot (or lack there of) was all over the place once Barrett picked up the story. She did a great deal of explaining characters’ motives and mental states instead showing them really accomplish anything.

Here I did not get to know Charlotte as I had in Another Lady's Sanditon; she wasn’t a fully drawn character. And the romance between her and Sidney was a series of short encounters, and even shorter conversations…not much opportunity for the two to get to know each other very well and fall in love. (The end was disappointing with Sidney coming to see her and “had as much as an hour gone by, before his partiality for Charlotte was understood by every Heywood old enough to notice?” Surely we could been told a bit more about the meeting between the two, perhaps actually witness it?)

I was surprised by Clara Brereton longing for Sir Edward when in Jane’s fragment she seemed aware of his real character and had no interest in him. And he didn’t seem to be quite the cad he was supposed to be.

While we’ll never know just where Jane would have gone with this fragment, I have a hard time believing she would have made bootlegging and gambling major plot points in the story.

Skip this one and try Sanditon completed by Another Lady instead.
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