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What Would Jane Austen Do?
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April 2019: History > What Would Jane Austen Do? By Laurie Brown - 4 stars

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Theresa | 7453 comments This was a surprisingly charming romp! At heart it is a Regency historical romance with a soupçon of Napoleonic era espionage...or maybe that's vice versa. It also has time travel, interesting characters, wit, ghosts, butterflies, Regency fashions, and Jane Austen. Somehow even though you see all the twists and turns of the plot from the very beginning, and there are a few too many ambiguous introductions or awkward connections, you find yourself enjoying the ride.

It begins and ends in the early 2000s at an English country manor (now inn) just down the road from Jane Austen House Museum in Chawton, England. Eleanor, jetlagged and newly jilted, arrives to find a mix up in her reservation, leading to her occupying the tower suite haunted by 2 sisters who lived there during the Regency. Eleanor is a costumier, specializing in Regency era. She is also a fan of Jane Austen, asking herself 'What Would Jane Austen Do?' when in an awkward situation. After meeting these ghostly roommates, Eleanor, bribed with meeting the real Jane Austen, agrees to let them take her back in time to prevent a series of unfortunate events at a Regency house party. There she meets Lord Shermont who is on the hunt for a French spy and has a mysterious past himself. Their chemistry is instant and sizzling.

I thought the author quite smart in some of her writing choices, such as making our 21st century heroine expert in Regency fashion and a Janeite gave her the ability to relatively seamlessly merge into the era once she arrives there. It also allowed for sharing quite a lot about the clothing of the era. In fact, there was quite a bit of historic information woven into the fiction, contributing to my enjoyment. Her characters were all well-drawn, with distinct personalities, and very likeable.


message 2: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7895 comments Serendipity-this popped up on my time-line the other day-and I said to myself "now there's one for Theresa"! I may even it pick up for my summer trips!


Theresa | 7453 comments Must have been about same time it caught my attention on my bookshelf. The paperback has a Borders price sticker on it...that's how long I have owned it. 😅


message 4: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7895 comments Too funny Theresa-while rummaging through MRL bookshelf I too found Borders stickers and some Barnes and Noble!


message 5: by Hebah (new) - added it

Hebah (quietdissident) | 675 comments OK, this sounds like a fun romp. On the TBR it goes!


message 6: by Theresa (last edited Apr 22, 2019 01:17PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Theresa | 7453 comments Joanne wrote: "Too funny Theresa-while rummaging through MRL bookshelf I too found Borders stickers and some Barnes and Noble!"

Given Borders went bankrupt and closed down quite some time ago - I'm thinking I may even have purchased the book during one of their closing sales.

As you can see, I wasn't joking when I said I have mountains of TBR ... I've been accumulating since 1977.


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