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Writing Jane Austen
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Writing Jane Austen

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2.94  ·  Rating details ·  865 Ratings  ·  216 Reviews
Critically acclaimed and award-winning—but hardly bestselling—author Georgina Jackson can’t get past the first chapter of her second book. When she receives an urgent email from her agent, Georgina is certain it’s bad news. Shockingly, she’s offered a commission to complete a newly discovered manuscript by a major nineteenth-century author. Skeptical at first about her abi ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published April 13th 2010 by Touchstone (first published March 27th 2010)
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Liralen
Mar 21, 2011 rated it it was ok
Hmm.

I liked that this was not a sequel to an Austen book. That isn't a criticism of the author's other books, which are Austen "sequels" - I haven't read any of her other books - but, as much as I love Austen, people who try to copy her style usually... fail. Badly.

Which brings us to Georgina.

It took her half the book to even get around to trying to read Pride and Prejudice. Half the book. She spends most of the rest of the book moping around and making excuses not to write.

Honestly? I get havin
...more
Julie
Jan 07, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: modern-lit
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anna
Jan 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
This is NOT an attempt at a Jane Austen sequel! After a series of books chronicling the continuing saga of the Darcy family, this is a huge departure with a contemporary story about writing.

I had not realized before that there was such a backlash against Austen in the literary community -- but you can understand it with the sheer number of bad rip-offs of characters and plot lines -- and just crazy stuff. With great humor, Aston tackles the whole question of the relevance of Austen in the contem
...more
Kate  Maxwell
Nov 18, 2010 rated it liked it
Having loved almost all books written by Elizabeth Aston, I thought that this book would make a nice addition to my Austen bookshelf. However, I was left wanting with this book. It truly had great potential, but it was not realized, unfortunately.

Georgina Jackson, a PhD in late 19th century history, has to be one of the dumbest PhD's in literature! Not only had she not read Jane Austen, she was completely resistant to the fact for more than half of the book. There were many times that I wanted t
...more
Damaskcat
Feb 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you were an author how would you feel about being asked to complete a previously unknown and newly discovered Jane Austen manuscript? Georgina Jackson - an American academic living in London - is asked to do just that in three months. She has previously had a prize winning literary novel published and has been selected by her fearsome agent, Livia, as the ideal author to complete the book.

But there is one problem that Gina can see straight away - she has never read any of Jane Austen's novels
...more
Janelle
Jun 05, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Autumn
Sep 04, 2012 rated it it was ok
In Writing Jane Austen, the protagonist has a plum, yet quite terrifying, project dropped into her lap: a fragment of a heretofor unknown Jane Austen novel has been discovered, and she has been handpicked to complete the manuscript.

I find myself at a loss as to how to review this book. I almost quit after page seven, finally got interested, then lost interest again, then found something enjoyable... and so on and so forth. The premise is more than faintly unbelievable: the writer of one, less th
...more
Emily
Dec 10, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2013
This book is terrible. The only reason I even finished it is because I suffer from MustReadWholeThingBecauseItFeelsLikeIShould.

The first 200 pages go like this: A whiny girl gets commissioned to write a book as if she were Jane Austen and says "I can't" a zillion times, using words like "flummoxed" and "gormless" so the reader knows FOR SURE that she's smarter than they are.

The last 100 pages go like this: whiny girl finally reads a Jane Austen novel after vehemently hating Jane Austen for 200
...more
Julie Bestry
Dec 21, 2011 rated it liked it
A few of the reviews for this book are immensely harsh, but I wonder if some of those readers actually read the whole book. For example, one complains that they refer to Austen as being a Victorian-era writer. A few characters do so, but those characters are the less educated "villains" of the story. The protagonist, and therefore the author, certain know and state that Austen was of the Regency period.

Here's the thing...the book is a nice little trifle. I never laughed out loud. I never worried
...more
Lynn Spencer
Sep 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: chick-lit
This novel about an author asked to complete a newly discovered Jane Austen work sounded like it could be fun - and it was at times. However, the balance of navel-gazing to actual writing/Jane Austen/anything but the heroine whining was not favorable throughout the first two-thirds of the book.

Georgina Jackson had a critically acclaimed first novel, but she can't write past chapter 2 of her second. More importantly, her grant is ending and she needs a reason to stay in England. Though she feels
...more
Laurel
A 21st-century homage to Jane Austen, or not your mother's traditional Austen sequel

Stepping into the 21st-century, Elizabeth Aston’s new novel Writing Jane Austen offers a completely different vintage of Austen inspired paraliterature than her previous six books based on Pride and Prejudice characters and their families from the early 19th-century. Set in present day London, readers will immediately discover that Austen’s influence of three or four families in a country village, social machinat
...more
Bill
May 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
I am reading Writing Jane Austen by Elizabeth Aston. I have read five of the six books previously published by Ms. Aston and they are delightful. Those, starting with Mr. Darcy's Daughters, are romances about the relations of Mr. and Mrs. Darcy, starting with their children. Elizabeth and Darcy are not in them except for possibly the last one, Mr. Darcy's Dream, which I have not had a chance to read yet.

WJA is a contemporary comedy about Georgina Jackson, a very serious writer who has published
...more
Linda C.
Apr 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Linda by: book publicist
Elizabeth Aston has written six novels set within Jane Austen's Mr. Darcy universe. Her latest novel, Writing Jane Austen is set in 21st century Britain and features a young female protagonist who is an award winning and critically acclaimed author named Georgina Jackson. Georgina's debut novel while celebrated in literary circles did not sell very well at all. She is also in a writing slump and cannot get past the first chapter of her second novel. Forty eight different versions of chapter one ...more
Lauren
Apr 27, 2012 rated it it was ok
Technically, this was an audio book listen, but it was the only thing I was able to accomplish in the past week or so. The narrator was amazing, able to capture the different mannerisms and personalities of so many different characters with different accents. I was really impressed by her.

While I immediately warmed to the narrator, no matter how hard I tried, I could not like the protagonist. Georgina Jackson is an American scholar whose first book received modest critical success and has sudde
...more
Rebecca
Aug 02, 2012 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Steve
May 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A humorous novel about an author who tries to write a Jane Austen Knockoff novel, written by an author who's written several Jane Austen Knockoff novels. For an enjoyable and witty read, this is well worth the time. I've read a number of JA Sequels,but I haven't read Aston's Jane Austen novels, and am curious to know if they're as funny as this one. A lot of the humor comes from Janeite Mania, which the protagonist distains, and the horrors of the publishing world. One question I'd love to ask A ...more
Rachel Anne
Jul 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My mom bought this book out of the $2 bin at Indigo and gave it to me as a fun read. It was surprisingly entertaining and very well written.

As a Janeite, I can't imagine a published author or well-read person who has never, ever read anything by Jane Austen.

The real gem of the novel is Maud. Rebellious, insecure, mature and yet so young. So well meaning but so foolish. What a treasure.

A highly enjoyable read!
Cherith
Oct 02, 2017 rated it it was ok
We GET IT, you don't like Jane Austen, and then when you finally read her, WE GET IT, you're procrastinating. (Why write Jane Austen fanfic if you're going to hate on her for a third of the book??)

I needed some fluff so it was good for me this week. But it was not good.
Meredith (Austenesque Reviews)
Georgina Jackson, feeling a mixture of apprehension and dread, makes her way down to her literary agent's office, wondering what it is her agent wants to see her for. It probably has nothing to do with her first novel from two years ago, which received raved reviews from critics but was not a big seller, and most likely isn't about her second book, in which Georgina is unable to write beyond the first chapter. What could her churlish agent want with her?

Georgina soon learns the reason she has b
...more
Jinky
"Critically acclaimed and award-winning — but hardly bestselling — author Georgina Jackson can’t get past the first chapter of her second book. When she receives an urgent email from her agent, Georgina is certain it’s bad news. Shockingly, she’s offered a commission to complete a newly discovered unfinished manuscript by a major nineteenth-century author. Skeptical at first about her ability to complete the manuscript, Georgina is horrified to learn that the author in question is Jane Austen.

To
...more
Elliot A
Apr 23, 2014 rated it liked it
I was quite on the fence about this book. I liked the main plot. It was cute, it was different and very easy to read. However, the main character was not very likable. At the beginning all I could think of was "how can a PhD recipient be so dumb?", but then I realized that she was mostly shy and insecure. Throughout the story I found a few contradictions in her character that caused confusion and didn't mesh with the overall main plot. These contradictions were also present in the subplots and s ...more
Leticia
May 03, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: austenspired
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
K likes Tea
Jun 07, 2011 rated it did not like it
As a Jane Austen fan and wannabe writer, I wanted to like this book. This is the story of a historian/writer given the chance to finish an uncompleted novel started by Jane Austen. However, this smart and sassy academic hates Jane Austen. She hates her even though she has never read a single of Austen's book nor seen any tv/movie adaptions. She spends the fist 100+ pages bashing Austen, Austen fans and running from an amazing career-making opportunity. The reader cannot help but feel insulted as ...more
Felisa
Aug 12, 2010 rated it it was ok
I haven't read any of Aston's other novels, picked this up on a whim. In this book Aston describes, unfavorably, the movement to create sequels of Austen's novels. She was foreshadowing the feelings of her own books I bet. Unfortunately a lot of the book was about Georgina, the main character, being simply unreasonable and insufferable. I kept wanting the storyline to go somewhere else, anywhere else. I should have known this wasn't the case, with two chapters left there were many issues unresol ...more
Mokamonkey
Jan 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: adult-books
This would have been so much better if they had cut out a portion of the middle. The author drew out the middle portion where she hems and haws about writing the book for way too long. And then when she finally got down to writing it, there didn't seem to be anything that got her to that point. It was the same with the romance. Nothing led up to it, it just was. And there was too much pretentious language. Sorry, but the British don't talk that way any more than we do in the US.
Heather
Oct 03, 2016 rated it it was ok
I did not think this was even worth reading. Georgina, the main character, is an obnoxious writer who's written one weird book and who is whiney and has writer's block. I never felt connected to her at all. The sub characters were more interesting, but the story just did not flow and dragged on. The ending redeemed the book.
Caralyn
Sep 13, 2012 rated it did not like it
just awful...the characters were not in the least bit compelling and the plot had a ridiculous amount of holes. I get that she was trying to create a modern Jane Austen novel around the plot of her actually attempting to write a Jane Austen novel. It was just a mess. The only good thing about having read this book is now I can't wait to go & reread a real Jane Austen novel.
Kara
May 01, 2010 rated it it was ok
Extremely boring and just blek! If it had been around 100 pages it might have been good, but dragging it out for almost 300 was a waste.
Lisa
Aug 04, 2010 rated it really liked it
Yes, another revamped Jane Austen, but I liked it. Not taxing, good beach/airplane read.
Linda Ollis
Jul 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
An entertaining read about a "serious" author who reluctantly becomes a Jane Austen fan.
Understanding Jane opens writer Georgina Jackson to a fuller enjoyment of life and relationships.
It's great fun to follow her evolution in her adopted city of London.
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Goodreads Librari...: wrong description of book 2 180 Sep 26, 2016 09:25AM  
Madison Mega-Mara...: Writing Jane Austen 1 3 Jan 03, 2013 03:42PM  
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184 followers
I’m the daughter of two Jane Austen addicts, who decided to call me after a character from one of Jane Austen’s novels. So it’s no wonder that I also became a passionate Jane Austen fan.

Elizabeth Aston is a pen name (it's actually my married name). I first wrote under the name Elizabeth Pewsey, and now Attica Books are reissuing those novels as ebooks under my Aston name.

I've also published seve
...more
“Why did she want to stay in England? Because the history she was interested in had happened here, and buried deep beneath her analytical mind was a tumbled heap of Englishness in all its glory, or kings and queens, of Runnymede and Shakespeare's London, of hansom cabs and Sherlock Holmes and Watson rattling off into the fog with cries of 'The game's afoot,' of civil wars bestrewing the green land with blood, of spinning jennies and spotted pigs and Churchill and his country standing small and alone against the might of Nazi Germany. It was a mystery to her how this benighted land had produced so many great men and women, and ruled a quarter of the world and spread its language and law and democracy across the planet.” 3 likes
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