I am a very big fan of Ms. Jane Austen.
I enjoy the originals, the retellings, the “inspired by,” all of them.
I was thrilled to receive an ARC of this book from NetGalley.
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from St. Martin’s Publishing Group through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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This book is currently available for pre-order.
Publication date is May 26, 2020.
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 legacy threatened, a group of disparate individuals come together to preserve both Jane Austen’s home and her legacy. These people—a laborer, a young widow, the local doctor, and a movie star, among others—could not be more different and yet they are united in their love for the works and words of Austen. As each of them endures their own quiet struggle with loss and trauma, some from the recent war, others from more distant tragedies, they rally together to create the Jane Austen Society.
A powerful and moving novel that explores the tragedies and triumphs of life, both large and small, and the universal humanity in us all, Natalie Jenner’s The Jane Austen Society is destined to resonate with readers for years to come.
I found myself very frustrated with this book.
Overall, it is a good book, don’t get me wrong.
Somewhat reminiscent of Ms. Austen’s works themselves, this book starts with a quick-paced scene to create much interest.
Following that, though was several chapters of introductions of characters and events and I repeatedly found myself thinking,
“Why is this important? Where does this fit in? Why do I care?”
We know there is going to be a Society formed – the description tells us so, not to mention the title tells us so. We can safely assume the individual characters we are meeting are going to be instrumental in this society.
But, it took nearly 100 pages to get them all together. That is a lot of character development for reaching a major plot point provided before you even start the book. #frustrating
I will say, this is a good book,
but I don’t know if the lead up
in the first half of the book is worth it.
The Final Verdict
My rating: 3 stars
Would I recommend? Yes