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Jane and the Canterbury Tale (Jane Austen Mysteries #11)

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  985 Ratings  ·  151 Reviews
Three years after news of her scandalous husband’s death, Adelaide Fiske is at the altar again, her groom a soldier on the Marquis of Wellington’s staff. The prospects seem bright for one of the most notorious women in Kent—until Jane Austen discovers a corpse on the ancient Pilgrim’s Way that runs through her brother Edward’s estate. As First Magistrate for Canterbury, Ed ...more
Paperback, 307 pages
Published August 30th 2011 by Bantam (first published January 1st 2011)
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Dorothy
(The subject of this review was an advance uncorrected proof copy. The book is to be published next month.)

I am addicted to this Stephanie Barron series featuring Jane Austen as an indomitable detective, and so when I had a chance to get an early copy of the book to read, I jumped at it! I was not disappointed. It is another very satisfying read, perfectly suited to a hot and lazy summer day.

We find Jane visiting her brother Edward and his family in the county of Kent. The tale opens with the we
...more
Sophia
"You are a formidable lady, are you not, Aunt Jane?" she asked wistfully. "When I was a child, I was used to think you were like a good faerie- always dropping out of the sky with your delightful stories, and dolls-clothes you embroidered so neatly; playing at cricket regardless of the stains the lawn left on your dress, and teaching the little ones to toss spillikins. It is only now I am grown older- and have been privileged to read your novels, and apprehend the subtlety of your observations-t ...more
Laurel
There is a trail that winds through the edge of the grand country estate of Godmersham Park in Kent owned by Edward Austen-Knight, elder brother of the authoress Jane Austen. Pilgrims have traversed this foot-path for centuries on their way to the shrine of the martyr Saint Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. Chaucer based his famous narrative, The Canterbury Tales, on pilgrims who travel across this path. Author Stephanie Barron places her eleventh novel in the Being a Jane Austen Mystery se ...more
Susan
Aug 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a series that seems to get better with each new book. Ms. Barron has an exceptional grasp of the world of Jane Austen. In this mystery, she combines Jane's Regency world with the echoes of Chaucer's medieval world of pilgrims to Canterbury. Jane's brother is the magistrate for Canterbury, each chapter begins with a quote from the Canterbury Tales, and the cast of characters reflect several of Chaucer's well-known pilgrims and have their own tales to tell the reader. Ever observant and cl ...more
Meredith
Feb 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Perhaps the mystery was not as well as contructed as it could have been - I guessed the culprit very early on - but it's always such a treat to read these books.
QNPoohBear
Jul 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: austenesque, mystery
It's the fall of 1813 and Jane is visiting her brother Edward and his family, now known as the Knights, at Godmersham in Kent. Jane delights in watching her too-serious niece Fanny dance and flirt all night at the wedding of one of their neighbors, Adelaide Thane Fiske. It's a second marriage for young Adelaide, her first husband was a wastrel who ran off to India and left his wife in debt. With his death, Adelaide was able to find true love with a dashing captain on Wellington's staff. The wedd ...more
writer...
Aug 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
My current Austen in August read, Being a Jane Austen Mystery !
Interestingly, published in August 2011, and always a welcome addition from author, Stephanie Barron..

THe morning after attending a neighbouring friend's home for a wedding ball, Jane is participant in a different type of party. Her nephews' shooting party discovery of a dead body. Jane's brother, being magistrate of the area, invites Jane's insights throughout the investigation to the chagrin of other less enlightened male character
...more
Jeffrey
Nov 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Although I'm not particularly a fan of mysteries, I received a gift copy of The Canterbury Tale, by Stephanie Barron and accolades about this series, Being a Jane Austen Mystery, came in from all angles on me. The plot, characters, authenticity, writing style, and general sophistication are BRILLIANT! I would characterize her style is somewhere between Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer so Ms Barron is keeping some pretty impressive company. It is a mystery indeed as the author presents one suspect ...more
Clara
Feb 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is one of the few book series to which I'm addicted. I've read every one of the 12 "Jane Austen" mysteries, and I look forward eagerly to the next one each time I'm done reading. Stephanie Barron does a very nice job of emulating Jane's style without being cloying. And I appreciate the trouble she takes to make sure that the novels are historically accurate as to Austen's actual location and activities when the action of the novel is taking place. In this one she's near Canterbury, visiting ...more
Kathleen
Feb 04, 2013 rated it liked it
I really enjoy the Jane Austen mysteries-- they're one of the few "turn historical people into detectives" books that I like-- and this latest installment is... okay. It's not bad, the mystery is fun and I didn't guess the actual culprit until a few chapters from the end, it's just not great. It didn't hold my attention like some of the other books in the series did. Don't know why; maybe it's just not the kind of mystery that holds on to me like the others were? I don't know. I couldn't pinpoin ...more
Nancy
Apr 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
This author catches the tone of Jane Austen as sleuth as she follows her life. This time she investigates a murder as she stays at her brother Edward's estate. Her niece Fanny is 20, and Jane is writing Emma as she helps Edward solve two local murders. Love this series.
Chelsea
Nov 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
I love this series, mainly because it marries Austen with murder mystery in such a pleasing manner. Jane Austen as the narrator/heroine is such a fun idea, and Stephanie Barron does a great job of making it believable and interesting.
Robert
Nov 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyable. One query: I know "clew" is or was an alternative spelling for "clue", but I can't find any evidence for "stile" being used for "style".
Carol
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I bought this Jane Austen mystery volume at the same time as #3 (Wandering Eye) at my local used bookstore. Once again, Stephanie Barron does not fail to impress with her prose, her character development, her story-crafting, her knowledge of Jane Austen's life, and her mimicry of Austen's literary voice.

I enjoyed this book for a few reasons:
1. It focused not just on Jane but on her niece, Fanny, who, since a brief mention of her in "Jane and the Madness of Lord Byron," has been a curiosity for m
...more
Becky
Mar 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
As always, an engaging and immersive reading experience from this series. This volume especially focuses on the relationship between Jane and her niece Fanny, and I liked seeing that kind of intergenerational female relationship. Fanny's potential dalliances with Jupiter Finch-Hatton and John Plumptre reminded me vaguely of the movie Miss Austen Regrets, which I think focused a little on the latter, with Tom Hiddleston. I think, it was a while ago. Anyway, and it seems to be a running theme in t ...more
Anaïs
Mar 23, 2018 rated it liked it
After a pretty difficult introduction with many descriptions about the dresses of these ladies and the mores that some people like to besmirch, it is only in the second part of the book that we finally have an intrigue: the true one, the one found by digging above the surface of the social conventions and the colors of the fabrics to wear for this or that occasion. And then, invasion, politics, monarch, suspicion and hypotheses appear and question us from all sides until the revelation so expect ...more
Alexandra
Jan 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Not my favorite Jane Austen mysteries. The Christmas one was much better; a faster read, this one was slow going.
Patricia
Sep 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
As always, I really enjoy the historical aspect of Baron's books about Jane.
Waverly Fitzgerald
One of the few of these mysteries where I actually guessed the solution of the mystery correctly before the end of the book, but I don't mind.
Karen
Jul 07, 2017 rated it liked it
An interesting Austen derivative that is true to her character and to the language and customs of the times. Enjoyable, though I had the "baddie" figured out early on.
Kate
Jan 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
A nice entry in the series.
Christina Sampson
Jan 04, 2015 rated it liked it
Historical fiction mysteries, specifically character series, are my favorite fiction genre. Read my reviews of this and other series (including those by Charles Todd, Denise Mina, Jacqueline Winspear, Will Thomas, Charles Finch, Tana French and more) on my blog, The Body on the Floor

I have to be careful when reviewing installments in this series. I’d be lying if I said ever since a major development involving a certain, shall we say, dashing, character occurred, the books simply haven’t been th
...more
Karen
Feb 22, 2017 rated it liked it
For some reason, I found this particular Jane Austen mystery sluggish and slow-moving. I'm not entirely sure why. Perhaps the author was trying to mimic the style of Chaucer in her writing? Or perhaps the solution to the mystery was obvious from the start, and most of the book consisted of fluff -- brilliantly written fluff -- but fluff all the same.
Trish
May 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Stephanie Barron has again delivered a satisfying read with Jane and the Canterbury Tale (the 11th installment in her Being A Jane Austen Mystery series). Ms. Barron’s ability to immerse the reader in a world where the very real Jane Austen is not just a character, but the lead investigator counted upon to solve tangled mysteries and grisly murders, is a singular creative stroke. In this installment Jane and her brother, Edward, are determined to solve a murder that occurred on his property, but ...more
Mandolin
Jun 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
Evil strikes close to Jane's temporary home in Kent, where she is residing with her brother Edward Knight and his family, when a man long thought to be dead is found murdered on the path cutting through Edward's land used by pilgrims in their visits to the Canterbury Cathedral. The murder occurs the evening after his supposed widow is married to another man. As magistrate, Edward is duty bound to discover the identity of the man's killer and he quickly enlists Jane to help him. Suspects abound, ...more
Susan in NC
Aug 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I won't recap the story, as it is ably summarized above; I will say that this continues to be one of my favorite historical mystery series. Stephanie Barron has done the almost impossible - capturing Jane Austen's dry, humorous, (yet never vicious) voice and satirical eye, and perfectly blending these delightful traits with generally well-structured and confounding mysteries (no easy task!). Even in the odd entry in the series when the key to the puzzle was somewhat obvious, Barron's delightful ...more
Shara
Oct 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
I am always left a little sad when I finish one of these, as if part of me believes there will be some kind of different ending. In this, the 11th installment of the series in which Jane Austen solved murders like a Regency Era Jessica Fletcher, it's already 1813 so there's only four years left.

Like all the others, Jane's location in the novel corresponds to where, based on her surviving letters, she really would have been at the time -- staying at Godmersham with Edward and watching Fanny's ro
...more
Kristen
Another fun installment in the Jane Austen Mystery series!

I very much enjoy these books. Being a huge Pride & Prejudice fan, it is always fun to find the references to the various Austen books that are judiciously sprinkled throughout.

But also, the mysteries that Jane is set to solving are a clever and interesting way of putting our favourite - well, MY favourite, anyway - author inside the world she so deftly invited the reader into in the books she wrote. Stephanie Barron does a wonderful
...more
Rebecca Mulligan
Jane Does it Again!

How I love these Jane Austen mysteries! Once again, Stephanie Barron transports us to the early 19th century and the delights of English society. This time, Jane is visiting her brother Edward who has vast wealth thanks to an inheritance. The occasion is the wedding of Adelaide Fiske, a widow. Even as the wedding night occurs, horror discends. Adelaide's first husband, a wasterl who deserted her and supposedly died of illness three years ago, miraculously reappears but is murd
...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Stephanie Barron was born Francine Stephanie Barron in Binghamton, NY in 1963, the last of six girls. Her father was a retired general in the Air Force, her mother a beautiful woman who loved to dance. The family spent their summers on Cape Cod, where two of the Barron girls
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More about Stephanie Barron

Other books in the series

Jane Austen Mysteries (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor (Jane Austen Mysteries, #1)
  • Jane and the Man of the Cloth (Jane Austen Mysteries, #2)
  • Jane and the Wandering Eye (Jane Austen Mysteries, #3)
  • Jane and the Genius of the Place (Jane Austen Mysteries, #4)
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  • Jane and the Prisoner of Wool House (Jane Austen Mysteries, #6)
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