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The Jane Austen Society

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  388 ratings  ·  253 reviews
Just after the Second World War, in the small English village of Chawton, an unusual but like-minded group of people band together to attempt something remarkable.

One hundred and fifty years ago, Chawton was the final home of Jane Austen, one of England's finest novelists. Now it's home to a few distant relatives and their diminishing estate. With the last bit of Austen's
Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: May 26th 2020 by St. Martin's Press
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Average rating 4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  388 ratings  ·  253 reviews

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Nilufer Ozmekik
Jan 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
“The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid”

That is my favorite Jane Austen quote. I love her books. I loved her memorable characters. Elizabeth Bennet is always gonna be one of my favorite literature characters. And thanks to Colin Firth made me re-watch a million times of his version of Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy ( When I saw him playing Mr. Darcy at Bridget Jones I just scream cried a lot!)

So of course I got volunteered to read anything
Apr 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Prepare to meet the "three or four families in a country village," and a Hollywood movie star, who embrace their passion and form a literary society in honor of an author whose enduring appeal, after 200 years, reminds us of what should be paramount in our lives: compassion, love, and reading! The Jane Austen Society is an uplifting tribute to its inspiration and the nobility of the human spirit. -- Laurel Ann Nattress, editor of Jane Austen Made Me Do It
Kathryn in FL

"They" say that imitation is the deepest form of flattery. Yes, indeed it is, as you will observe when you read this lovely story. I am not a romance fan, so this is truly high praise. The interesting characters and their mutual love for both Jane Austen, as a person, and her body of work draws them together in a quest to create a memorial of some type in tribute to her work and her talent.

As they share their passion for the writings and characters set in Austen's time (late 1700's to
A heartwarming, gently paced tale set in the 1940's English village, Chawton, that will delight many readers.

Review to come closer to release date.

My thanks to St. Martin's Press for the opportunity to read the book in exchange for my honest review.
The Jane Austen Society

This delightful name-dropping book was made doubly so by the many Austen characters referred to, mentioned, and even comparisons made with the fictional characters of this tale. It was enough to make a reader thrill with inner yelps of “Oooo! Oooo! I know this! I know this!” Austen fans will approve heartily, I predict. The story unfolds in a very Austen fashion. . . so many reasons things are as they are and always will be and it is hopeless to think otherwise, and about
Feb 05, 2020 rated it liked it
I have just finished reading The Jane Austen Society, by author Natalie Jenner

I am giving this book 2.5 stars

The story takes place in a small village in England – Chawton, just after the war.

The author creates a feeling much like the writing style of Jane Austen, and the storyline surrounds a group of Jane Austen fans, who want to preserve the home of the famous author

The book makes me want to read more beautiful Jane Austen books, but I found the storyline a bit simple and lacking of lustre

3.5 Stars Review to follow.
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, giveaways
I read a lot and often, and rarely am I as moved by the story and the characters as I was by Natalie Jenner's magnificent debut, The Jane Austen Society. It's one of those rare books that makes you think about its people long after you put it down. You will laugh with them, you will fall in love with them, you most certainly will cry with them.

The heart of the story is beloved British writer, Jane Austen, and an estate in Chawton, England, where she lived. The plot is driven by eight very
Rachel McMillan
Jan 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
"But one can always read Austen "

So there is a lot of Jane Austen out there right now. As there always is. And I don't begrudge anyone the love HOWEVER as someone who would love to see some of her other literary favourites (I am looking at you, miniseries of Villette) get attention, I often feel that every time I approach something Austen I will be seeing something I have seen before.

For example, on first glance, you might look at this and think: hey! It's the Jane Austen Book Club 40s Style.

Jun 04, 2019 marked it as to-read
Giveaway win!!
Nov 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, 2019
*4.5 stars

If you adore Jane Austen, and quiet novels about life than this is perfect for you. This take place during WWII and shortly after, in one of the last places that Jane Austen lived, Chawton, England. You have a motley crew of characters: an American actress, a doctor, a lawyer, a teenage girl, a teacher, a shy field worker, and even a descendant of Jane's. They are all of different ages, wealth, some grieve, some are too shy, and some have big ideas, but they all have one thing in
Mar 09, 2019 added it
Well, this is something I need in my life.
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Eight people living in the vicinity of Chawton, Hampshire come together in post-WWII England to try to save parts of Austen's estate for history. The characters show similarities with Austen's prototypes, but they also wrestle with their own demons and their own losses. Jenner captures them vividly and makes their shared goal—to gather together the shards of an artist's life cut short—a goal that gives them all purpose and fellowship. It is one thing to love Jane Austen (like we all do), but ...more
Silver Petticoat
I was completely captivated. Natalie Jenner’s writing is charming, with a keen eye for romance and small-town life. Not only does "The Jane Austen Society" affirm the power of Jane Austen’s books but it’s a huge love letter to Jane Austen and Janeites everywhere. So, if you’re not a member of the “real” Jane Austen Society, you’ll likely want to join after reading this delightful debut. If you liked "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society," then you’ll enjoy this lovely book. I can’t ...more
Kathleen Flynn
Jane Austen exerts an irresistible fascination on her readers, and on writers too. Many cannot resist answering her, whether by retelling her plots in modern form (Eligible, Unmarriageable, The Three Weissmanns of Wesport); taking them from a different point of view (Mary B., Longbourn, etc); continuing them (Death Comes to Pemberley, etc); imagining Austen herself as, say, a vampire or simply a teenager (Jane Bites Back, Jane's First Love). Books are always in dialogue with other books, but ...more
Thanks to NetGalley for an e-ARC of this novel. All opinions expressed in my review are my own and not affected by NetGalley's service.

A race against time to save Jane Austen's legacy in Chawton, the Hampshire village where she spent her final days writing and revising her famous novels. It all begins in in June 1932 when a chance meeting between Adam Berwick, a sad farmer mourning his lost family and educational opportunities, and an American tourist inspires Adam to spend his winter reading
Susan's Reviews
Dec 06, 2019 marked it as to-read
My thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Fans of Jane Austen's books might well enjoy this story about a group of second world war townsfolk who unite to preserve the small home and monuments that drew many visitors to the small town of Chawton, Jane Austen's final resting place.

I could see elements of Austen's stories played out in this novel. Bits and pieces of the plots of Emma, Persuasion, Pride and Prejudice - all lent a
Jane Austen inspires romance, friendship, and self-discovery in this lovely story

I love books. It is as simple as that. The thing I love most is their ability to transport me in time and space, and Jane Austen Society was an especially lovely trip. Fiction and reality intertwine to take the reader to the village of Chawton, Hampshire, where author Jane Austen lived, and where her brother’s estate, Chawton Park, is still located.

Most of the story takes place in 1945 when eight very different
Cheryl Kennedy
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fictional story of the diverse citizenry in the village of Chawton who joined together to perpetuate the work of Jane Austin by forming a Society in the 1940s. Readers are introduced to the manners, class rank and country gentry of the village of Chawton where Austen wrote or revised her major works.

Natalie Jenner's debut identifies with Austen's trademark settings and cultural touchstones that welcomes reader's associations to her classic writings. With the appeal of cooperation,
Molly Greeley
May 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was so privileged to receive an advance copy of The Jane Austen Society, a book that drew me in from the very first page and kept me reading well past my bedtime. Natalie Jenner's thoughtful interpretation of, and clever homages to, Jane Austen's books makes her own novel a special treat for those of us who have read (and re-read) Austen's work. But even readers who are not as familiar with Jane Austen will find much to appreciate. Jenner has a gift for writing characters you feel you truly ...more
Kate Grace
Jun 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
I can’t think of a better word to describe this book than ‘lovely’!

It’s not just a lovely interpretation, or adaption, of Jane Austen’s works. It’s a lovely celebration of reading Jane Austen in particular - and of READING in general! This novel reminds us of reading’s ability to support connections... to connect us with others, to (re)connect us with ourselves.

The post-war setting and original characters introduce a balance of heartbreak and heart (which I imagine would make Austen proud).

Barb Wild
Jul 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: won
I was one of the lucky ones that won this book. The story that takes place is about the love of the Jane Austen novels and the bringing together of locals to study read and talk about the Jane Austen novel. I found it wonderful as it supports the continuation of reading also over time. The story was well written, easily understood and i would love to share it with my book club.
Dec 16, 2019 rated it liked it
The premise of the story is very endearing; people coming from different backgrounds, influenced by different situations in life, and what they all have in common is the love for books. The solace it gives them.

Adam, a farmer, who reads literature, is the most interesting character and had me hooked from the first pages. And he continued to awe me with his character. He falls for Jane Austen’s character of Elizabeth Bennet. It’s the way she spoke her mind. Loved his thoughts and how he craved to
Feb 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The history of the Jane Austen Society (real places, no real people) is set in the post-WWII English village of Chawtonwhere Austen had lived for several years. Besides a descendant of Austen there are several other people from the village, a doctor, a teacher, a young serving girl with ambitions or a farmer with whom the story starts and ends. They and some others, amongst them a Hollywood actress, get together to preserve Austens work and keep her memory.

Each one of them has his/her own story,
Feb 08, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley-arc
I can devour anything and everything that I get my hands on about Jane Austen. Even the name of the novel was enough for me to grab it like my life depended on it. The Jane Austen Society is a novel combining facts with fiction based on half-real characters. I learnt a lot about the village and the house Austen lived in and wrote, and also how her relics and ornaments change hands at auctions, which is kind of sad. However the society consisted of Austenesque literature fans cherish her memory ...more
Review to follow.
Anna Kaling
Jan 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical
What a charming and heartwarming novel this is. We hear so much about how people 'these days' have the attention spans of hyperactive goldfish and there has to be a car chase on the first page of a book to get The Kids interested and, actually, no. A beautifully-written book is just as captivating and can hold our attention just as well as a car chase. Wonderful characters can draw us completely into a world without smartphones or Netflix or much instant gratification at all, and we don't miss ...more
Carlos Silva
Nov 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“Do you ever stop and think how lucky we are, the way we get to live here every day, like Jane Austen did?”

I am not the biggest fan of historical fiction, but I was so incredibly pleased! I am also not the most passionate Jane Austen aficionado (I much rather simpatize with the character of Frances Knight in preferring the Brontës) but I didn’t drown in intertextuality and references as I thought I would – though though there are some cleverly subtle relations between Jenner’s characters and
Sigrid A
Oct 09, 2019 rated it liked it
The premise for this book is a good one: a group of people living in Chawton (and elsewhere) band together during the post-war period and their own personal troubles to create a Jane Austen House Museum on the property where Austen wrote her final novels. For Austen fans, and especially those who've visited the House Museum, this is pretty irresistible.

I found this a mostly decent read, although it is a little plodding at times. The author relies a bit too heavily on telling us about characters
Kate Baxter
Jan 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Oh, such a delightfully charming read from a new voice within the historical fiction genre. Author Natalie Jenner, a self-proclaimed Austen fan, has artfullly captured the charm of an Austen period piece. However it is set 150 years later in the post WWII years. The subtle interplay among the cast of characters reads as familiar story for Austen afficionados yet is clearly spoken in the vernacular of its later time. Her characters are well-developed, very human in their brokenness yet all ...more
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Natalie Jenner was born in England and emigrated to Canada as a young child. She obtained her B.A. and her LL.B. from the University of Toronto, where she was the 1990 Gold Medalist in English Literature at St. Michael's College, and was Called to the Bar of Ontario in 1995. In addition to a brief career as a corporate lawyer, Natalie has worked as a recruiter, career coach, and consultant to ...more