Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The California Dashwoods” as Want to Read:
The California Dashwoods
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The California Dashwoods

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  172 ratings  ·  56 reviews
Make a new future. Choose your true family. Know your own heart.

When Elliott Dashwood’s father dies, leaving his family virtually penniless, it’s up to Elliott to do what he’s always done: be the responsible one. Now isn’t the right time for any added complications. So what the hell is he doing hooking up with Ned Ferrars? It’s just a fling, right?

Elliott tries to put it
ebook, 232 pages
Published May 1st 2018
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The California Dashwoods, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The California Dashwoods

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  172 ratings  ·  56 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The California Dashwoods
Mar 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cute-boys, family, m-m, sweet, arc

Maybe love was choosing to believe that it would all work out in the end.

A modern take on Jane Austen's classic Sense and SensibilityI'm sure most people know the story but even if you don't you won't want to miss this little gem.

When Elliott Dashwood's father dies,leaving his family with barely enough to get by,they find themselves shunned by the remaining(wealthy) Dashwood family.

Elliott,Marianne,and Greta are the product of Henry's second marriage to their one time Au Pair,Abby.Henry
Lisa Henry
Feb 26, 2018 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: m-m, stuff-i-wrote
This is a modern take on Sense and Sensibility.

If you give it a try, I hope you enjoy it!
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
*3.5 stars*

This is one of those times when I think that it isn't the book, it's me.

Why? Because I sort of screwed up.

First of all, I didn't read the blurb very well. I just saw Lisa Henry, who is one of my favorite authors, and just grabbed the book. For some reason, (I think because it said it was a take on Sense and Sensibility), I assumed it was a historical romance, and I was ridiculously excited. However, this is a modern take, as the blurb (*duh*) states.

Also, I haven't actually ever
Feb 28, 2018 marked it as maybe
Sense and Sensibility is actually my favorite Austen novel and Henry writes stories I enjoy, but I'm just not a huge fan of reworked classics. Yeah, there's the occasional one that makes me go - Wow. Then again, it is set in California. *dithers*

Tumblebrain: If someone would write a version of Emma where she gets stabbed in the throat and stuffed into her piano that would be awesome.
Apr 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is not a romance in the modern sense of the genre. It is, however, a classic romance set in modern times. Lisa Henry remains faithful to the original in this retelling of Sense and Sensibility, so if you're familiar with the original story, and you enjoyed it, you'll surely enjoy this The California Dashwoods! I admit, I am more of a Pride and Prejudice kind of girl, but Sense and Sensibility isn't too far behind in in my esteem. It's Jane Austen, so both are close to my heart.

In Lisa
5 Hearts

This was everything I could have hoped for when I heard that Lisa Henry would be writing a retell of my favorite Austen novel, Sense and Sensibility. I know most love their Pride and Prejudice but I’ve loved the Dashwoods for years both in the written form and in moving pictures. This was such a beautiful homage to the original work while taking it and making it its own modern blend of Austen-esque romance with a strong family bond and a fresh queer take on the story.
“Know your own
Wealthy, privileged, Henry Dashwood ran off with the au pair 20 years ago to build a happy, carefree life.

The Dashwoods have never forgiven him or accepted his new famiy. So when he dies of cancer, he leaves behind his wife Abby and his 3 children, Elliott-20, Marianne-18, and Greta-13, not entirely destitute, but certainly in dire straights.

As the new man of the family and the most practical of them all, Elliott assumes the mantel of responsibility. Does that leave any room in his life for
May 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.25 stars

If you came to the romance genre by way of Jane Austen (as I did way back when), then you're probably going to like this a lot. Sense & Sensibility is not my favourite Jane Austen by a long stretch but I enjoyed it m/m style.
Apr 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: zz-2018, m-m-read, indi-go
I enjoyed this modern take on Sense and Sensibility. The story focused on Elliot Dashwood who has recently lost his father to cancer. His father is from a wealthy family who dislike Elliot's mother and all three of the children. The Family show up to take back the house and most if it's belongings, uprooting Elliot's life. In the midst of the chaos Elliot finds himself attracted to Ned, his sister-in-law's brother. Both men are shy and reserved and they have an immediate and strong chemistry.

2.75 stars rounded up

Full disclosure: I only know Austen's works through their screen adaptation -- and I love most of them. I don't read the original (in books version, I mean) and you can't make me. Sorry, but I don't even have the patience to read my OWN language of the yesteryear much less a foreign one. Anyway, so my memory recall of the Dashwoods from Austen's Sense and Sensibility is taken from the movie starring Emma Thompson & Kate Winslet.

This is the first queer re-telling of the
Skye Kilaen
A modern gay retelling of Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, which I have not read, nor do I remember if I saw a film adaptation, so I have no idea how it reflects the original. With that out of the way, I really liked this! It's more romance-adjacent than strictly romance, because the love story somewhat bookends the main character's personal journey, though it's in his thoughts fairly pervasively during the time the characters are apart.

Elliott Dashwood ended up caring for his terminally ill
Joyfully Jay
May 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: elizabeth
A Joyfully Jay review.

5 stars

Love and the betrayal of love are themes often found in Jane Austen’s work, and this — a new take on Sense and Sensibility — is a wonderful exploration of that. In this story, Henry didn’t just take a second wife, he abandoned his first wife and his first son. That pain stands between John and his father’s other family, explaining the distance and the cruelty of simply casting them out without assistance. Francesca, too, has reasons for her dislike of the family
Mar 05, 2018 marked it as to-read
I CAN’T wait to read this!!
Mar 19, 2018 marked it as to-read
Shelves: pre-ordered
Jane Austen's best novel being reimagined. Lisa Henry writing it. Fingers crossed this is a complete ripper.
Apr 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not your typical romance, more an examination of what makes us human, what keeps families together, and what sets them apart.

And how we should never let what other people do or think influence our own behaviours or thoughts.

This modern retelling of Austen's Sense & Sensibility doesn't stray from the original's formula, it just switches up Elinor Dashwood for the masculine Elliott and gives Marianne a bit of a twist with her Colonel Brandon (Alan Rickman in the Oscar winning adaptation is
2.5 stars rounded down

True to the Goodreads definition of two stars, this was just an okay read for me.

Full disclosure, I love all Austin adaptations on the screen, but I've never actually read her books.
I think this would have worked if it were pared down a bit and made tighter. The two leads don't get enough time together and the story meanders around a bit with a sad and depressed Elliott trying to hold the fort while his awful family abuse his good nature and are so busy being 'free
♆ BookAddict  ✒ La Crimson Femme
Will this book be a series? If so, I want to read the entire series - NOW. I am a little confused by this story. Not the story itself, but who wrote this story. For me, Ms. Henry is known for her dark, gritty sometimes depraved tales. Sometimes it is alien craziness that keeps hinting at kinky sex yet fades to black when it could get interesting. In California Dashwoods, I kept expecting a terribly traumatic sexual violation scene. Maybe there is kinky shenanigans. Half way through the story, I ...more
May 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mm, my-mm-reviews

I am skeptical of these rewrites of classic favorites (to the point of ranting about horrific products that are out there)...but to me this book is really an enjoyable tribute, renovation, and modernization of Sense and Sensibility. The author picks out some themes to build on, offers much more extensive background then the original, and takes advantage of familiar events and tropes while refreshing and modernizing the conversations and thought processes. Elliott is our hero and we
Jul 29, 2019 rated it liked it
2 1/2 stars.

I thought this book was going to be phenomenal when I started reading but as I got more into it, I realized my enthusiasm had been too much. Although the story is sweet and nice, maybe it will work for people who like very, very, very, very s l o w b u r n i n g m/m romance; what little romance there is in the story.

Technically the book is well written but you should know that this isn’t really a m/m romance but more of the story of the Dashwood Family (the California one, not to be
Isabella ~Mikku-chan~
*~~*ARC kindly provided by the author to me in exchange for an honest review *~~*

I can't tell how joyous I was when I've heard about this retelling, a modern adaption of Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, with a M/M cast and set in California, not England this time. :D

I am a huge fan of retellings and - since I've read the original - took a particular close look of the things that were changed and which were still there.

First we have a change in the gender of the - in the original - heroine.
Marc | Rainbow Gold Reviews
May 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a modern take on Jane Austin's 'Sense & Sensibility' by one of my favorite authors, Lisa Henry. I had the chance to read an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review and took it, even though I have not read 'Sense & Sensibility', because I have enjoyed many other books by this author.

First I want to mention that I never felt like I missed something, because I had not read the classic this modern take is based on. I could thoroghly enjoy the story without any prior
Annie Maus
May 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The first chapter of Lisa Henry's The California Dashwoods, convinced me her novel would merit five hearts. In a few fascinating phrases she presents a houseful of quirky characters, coexisting in a precarious situation.

"In the awkward silence that descended over the dining room, Great Uncle Montgomery muttered over non-existent mold spores, and Greta turned her steak knife over and over in her palm in a thoughtful manner that made Aunt Cynthia shuffle her chair a few inches further away. Happy
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is absolutely delightful. As a huge Austen fan and a queer person, as soon as I saw this I desperately coveted reading it, and it has not disappointed! I identify with Elliott to quite a significant degree and the way Lisa Henry has handled the finer points of the plot - true to the sentiment and the major events, but also giving it a gorgeous modern twist - is incredibly impressive. I cannot recommend this book enough! It was a true joy to lose myself in.
Huh. I'm not quite sure I actually can rate this because though I never really disliked Jane Austen, she was not an author whom I encountered in a natural way, i.e. I had to read her books for university not for fun. So. I have a shedload of knowledge about things that these days amount to trivia you can amuse people with at a party (if you are a weird person like me and go to weird-person parties (if you ever actually go to parties)). I kind of learned to appreciate Jane Austen because I ...more
Lindsay M.
Jun 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was such a sweet take on Sense and Sensibility, which happens to be my favorite Jane Austen! I absolutely adored the characters, especially Elliot, Greta, and Lucien (LOVED HIM). If you are an Austen fan, please don't sleep on this one!
May 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mm, favorites-2018
I love Sense and Sensibility and I love basically anything Lisa Henry writes, so I knew going in I'd more than likely love The California Dashwoods. And I so did.

Lisa Henry does a great job of being very true to the original S&S while also adding in some new elements and exploring some themes that Jane Austen's book doesn't (note that in any comparisons, I'm not critiquing S&S - they're different stories from different authors and different times). This story is, sure, a romance, but the
Ruthie Taylor
Apr 29, 2018 rated it liked it
~~I received a free copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads ~~

Anyone who has read Austen's Sense and Sensibility will recognise this modernisation of the tale, but actually anyone at all will enjoy the story. I am not always a big fan of rewrites, but there are enough twists to make this a unique reading experience.

There are elements which I am not convinced translate well to the modern day. In fact the behaviour of the upper class in Regency England switched to the 'royalty' of
Chris, the Dalek King
The California Dashwoods is a modern day, queered-retelling of Jane Austen’s very popular story, Sense and Sensibility. Elliott Dashwood (a gender-flipped Elinor), his two younger sister Marianne and Margaret (known as Greta), and his very-recently widowed mother, are forced out of their home by his father’s very rich–and incredibly stuck-up–family. But not before he meets the brother of his half-brother’s wife, Ned Ferrars (a moderned up Edward). What follows is…well, Sense and Sensibility. A ...more
May 07, 2018 rated it liked it
This was a very pleasant read - I could only vaguely recall the story of Sense and Sensibility, and this did a pretty good job of retelling it. For me however, it felt a bit in the short side and I wasn’t convinced about Elliot’s feelings, or some of Marianne’s for that matter. I loved Greta, although she didn’t get as much page time - she was the only one I didn’t want to slap through selfishness.

A nice addition to Jane Austin’s m/m remakes.
I’m always of the belief circumstances affect our reading experience. How (we felt) and when (what year or age) we read might shape our reception of a story. I remember I loved Jane Austen’s “Sense and Sensibility” despite finding some of the characters a bit annoying. “The California Dashwoods” is the modern retelling and queered version of the classics. Surprisingly, I didn’t find myself as drawn by the story as I did the original.

Narrated from Elliott Dashwood’s POV in third person, “The
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Henchmen of Zenda
  • Robby Riverton: Mail Order Bride
  • Object of Desire  (Bitter Legacy, #2)
  • Unfit to Print
  • Introducing Mr. Winterbourne
  • Whisper (Skins, #2)
  • Lock Nut (The Plumber's Mate Mysteries, #5)
  • Salt Magic, Skin Magic
  • Murder Takes the High Road
  • Band Sinister
  • Riven (Riven, #1)
  • Machine Metal Magic (Mind + Machine, #1)
  • Guilt by Association (Hazard and Somerset, #4)
  • Consorting With Dragons
  • Any Old Diamonds (Lilywhite Boys #1)
  • Edge of Forever
  • A Gentleman Never Keeps Score (Seducing the Sedgwicks, #2)
  • Where Death Meets the Devil (Death and the Devil, #1)
See similar books…
I like to tell stories. Mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters. They gotta work for it though. No free lunches on my watch.