Wednesday, 4 June 2014

TALKING JANE AUSTEN WITH ... SARAH PRICE, AUTHOR OF FIRST IMPRESSIONS, AN AMISH ADAPTATION OF PRIDE AND PREJUDICE.

Join Sarah Price and me in our "Talking Jane Austen Session" and take your chances to win her retelling of Pride and Prejudice, First Impressions. 5 ebook copies for 5 lucky winners! Check out the rafflecopter form below this post. 

Hello and welcome, Sarah. It's a great pleasure to make your acquaintance and present you to our Austenite friends here at My Jane Austen Book Club. My first question for you is: Why Jane Austen? I mean, what  are  the reasons  of the appeal  of Jane Austen’s world for the  21st century reader?

I’ve always been a reader as well as a writer. I read Jane Austen’s books so many times over the years, starting as a young girl. In today’s world, I believe more people are starting to read again after a lull. However, I also believe that in the world of 140 characters or less statuses, we have lost an appreciation of the classics. Many of my regular readers have not read books like Pride & Prejudice or Sense & Sensibility. This was my way of blending my love for the classics with my deep appreciation of the Amish. It was a way of showing readers that the themes in Jane Austen’s books transcend far beyond one particular time period. It was also my way of introducing my Amish genre readers to Jane Austen and vice versa. 



When people learn that I have written so many books about the Amish, they often make a comment about this genre. I admit that some less-than-scrupulous authors simply slap a bonnet on a girl’s head or hire ghost writers to throw together a short story which they sell as a “book”. But there are some of us who truly care about the craft of writing as well as the culture and religion of the Amish. I want to share my passion for writing AND the Amish with those readers who care about literary quality as much as I do. 


Jane Austen and modernity. What would her wit’s  favourite targets have been if she had written nowadays? 

I think she would have two main target. First and foremost, the fact that this generation is so fascinated with social media and sharing everything with the rest of the world. Yet, at the same time, they are also very focused on themselves. This is the “me” generation. It’s not necessarily about social status anymore. It’s about popularity on the social media circuit with people whom we never meet in person. I think Jane Austen would find that strangely amusing. 

Secondly, I think that celebrities have gone overboard with their fascination of themselves. I saw a People Magazine with an image of an actress lamenting how her family had been through so much in 2013-2014—she had the BRCA gene for breast cancer and decided to do a preventative double mastectomy. I read that and just rolled my eyes. Really? Hasn’t everyone been through so much? During that same time period, I survived breast cancer which snowballed into a hundred other problems: job termination, loss of income (I was a professor), distraught children, medical bills, infections, hospitalization, etc. And I’m not finished yet!  But, I’m also not unique. I’m just like thousands of other women. And we haven’t done it with nannies and personal assistants and millions of dollars to make life easier. 


I think the disconnect from reality would be a point of interest to Jane Austen. It sure is to me. 


Which is your favourite among the major six?

Emma. I simply adore Emma. She is the most imperfectly perfect heroine. Of course, I’m biased because I, personally, relate to her the most. She wants to help others and sees that as her duty. Yet, in doing so, she ends up doing more harm than good in some cases. While all of Jane Austen’s characters go through a metamorphosis in the books, I felt that Emma really experienced change on a deeply personal level. It’s hard to admit when one is wrong. Emma has to do that repeatedly and, as a result, she grows because of it. 

You know I’m a teacher to teenage students. Do you think she can still teach/be a model for nowadays youth?

I’d like to think so. Unfortunately, as a fellow educator, I can assure you that many students enter college without having read these classics. There is a lack of appreciation for literary finesse and writing in general. Personally, I have also noticed this with a lot of writers, too. The ability to independently publish books is both a blessing and a blight. 

If I say ... Mr Darcy, what is the first image that comes to your mind?

My husband. When I first met my husband, I didn’t like him at all. He’s an older man, born in France, and very polished…in an old-school European type of way. He runs an equestrian academy and my daughter was riding there. I thought he was very strict and stern. I also tended to imitated him and his accent (which, by the way, I have perfected over the years) in order to make my family laugh. However, there was a moment…just one single moment…when I caught a glimpse of him that made me realize that I was completely wrong. He was playing the guitar in a horse paddock, not even knowing that I was watching him. I took a photo of him and when I later looked at it, I saw a depth to him that I had never noticed before. You could say that I realized my first impression of him was very incorrect. When I released my prejudice of my initial impression, I realized that he was completely different. Two years later, we married…on horseback at his farm with thirty attendants…all on horseback. It was very romantic. 

Let’s play a bit. If you had the possibility to get lost in one of Jane Austen’s novels (like Amanda , the protagonist of LOST IN AUSTEN) , which one would you choose? Why?


I find the relationship between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy to be incredibly romantic. I would definitely want to get lost in Pride & Prejudice. I always loved a rags to riches story and, while the Bennetts were not exactly poor, Darcy was certainly socially superior.  The fact that he married her for love instead of following the mandates of society at that time just makes smile and sigh. THAT is romance. It’s similar to my Plain Fame Trilogy with an international superstar falling for an Amish girl. He could have anyone in the world but he follows his heart, even when the social media and his inner circle tell him that it will never work. That’s what love is about…making it work. 

Why should we still read her novels according to you? What can we learn from them? (a question my students often ask me, why do we have to read the classics?) 

I find it disturbing that my two children are not reading classics in school. The literary finesse with which Jane Austen, Victor Hugo, Charles Dickens, etc. write simply cannot be duplicated. I’m very pleased that J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter Series tipped the scale to make reading cool again. However, there is nothing like the appreciation of a classic book. I read them and feel myself becoming intellectually stimulated. While I love to get lost in other books (I’m reading Fangirl right now by Rainbow Rowell and One Last Blind Date by Erin Brady… LOVING THEM), I try to balance my reading to include different classics on a regular basis. They are more difficult to read, of course, but that’s one of the reasons I like them. My brain has to think when I sit down with my tattered copy of Persuasion or Sense & Sensibility. And when the brain thinks, we grow. 

The huge spreading  of spin-offs, sequels, mash-ups is due to a desire to preserve and Jane’s messages, atmospheres, techniques and prolong the pleasure or more to the ambition to correct and adapt  what in her work is considered too distant or different?

Clearly, the overwhelming love of readers around the world for Jane Austen has fed this enormous demand for spin-offs and sequels. I feel that the interest is due, in part, to a desire to preserve the messages, atmospheres, and techniques that Jane Austen gifted to us through her work. In addition, these sequels, adaptations, and spin-offs prolong the pleasure of her delightful characters and timeless storylines. There are central themes in all of her books that transcend time and place-love, obligation, duty, loyalty, friendship, pride, prejudice. 

While some might worry that the adaptations might dilute the power of Jane Austen’s work, I believe it is just the opposite. Many of my readers are dusting off their old copies of Pride & Prejudice to re-read the original. To me, that’s a wonderful compliment to my book as well as one of the outcomes I hope for when I started this project. 


How would you advertise your book in less than 50 words?

A new genre of Amish Christian fiction that focuses on the literary aspects of story-telling by sharing aspects of Jane Austen’s classics expertly blended into an Amish environment to demonstrate the timeless nature of Austen’s books. 

Is there a minor character in Jane Austen’s work you’d like to write a spin-off story for?

I’d love to write about Charlotte from Pride and Prejudice. I think she was an interesting character and, unfortunately, very familiar. How many women find themselves making sacrifices…whether for their husbands, their children, or even themselves…in order to “make it” in the world. We, as people, are constantly reinventing ourselves. I’d love to see Charlotte emerge from her marriage to Mr. Collins. She settled in order to survive. I’d like to see her survive in a way that she  finds the happiness we all seek in life. 

About Sarah Price 

An Amazon Top 100 Author for Books and eBooks: December 2012, January 2013, February 2013, April 2013, May 2013, August 2013, September 2013)


The Preiss family emigrated from Europe in 1705, settling in Pennsylvania as the area's first wave of Mennonite families. Sarah Price has always respected and honored her ancestors through exploration and research about her family history and their religion. At nineteen, she befriended an Amish family and lived on their farm throughout the years.
Twenty-five years later, she now splits her time between her husband and children in the NYC Metro area and a home that she shares with an Amish woman in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania where she retreats to reflect and write. As a masterful storyteller, Sarah Price prides herself on presenting an authentic Amish experience for her readers. Many of her stories are based on actual people she has met and her own experiences living among the Amish over the years.


While she started out as an Indie author, she signed on with Realms, an imprint of Charisma House and Waterfall Press, an imprint of Brilliance Publishing. Her first book for Realms, First Impressions: An Amish Adaptation of Pride and Prejudice was released in May 2014.

Social Media Links



Twitter @SarahPriceAmish
Instagram @SarahPriceAuthor



a Rafflecopter giveaway

53 comments:

Patricia Finnegan said...

I love reading books that takes place in Amish country. So the combination of two of my favorite things is wonderful!

Joanne said...

Congratulations on the new book.
I agree - not enough of the classics are being read!

Tina said...

I am looking forward to reading FIRST IMPRESSIONS. I enjoy reading your books.Have a wonderful week.

Heidi Robbins said...

I adore Austen adaptations and retellings because the themes of her novels are so timeless. Looking forward to checking out your book!

Lisa Stifler said...

I love reading Amish fiction. This sounds like a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing your interview and a chance to win. ~ Blessings ~ lisastifler(at)yahoo(dot)com

Theresa coyer said...

I can not wait to read this book. I haven't been able to purchase it yet but I know it will absolutely amazing just like all of Sarah's books

Ceri T said...

Hi there. Such an interesting article. I haven't read any Amish stories, but I noticed this one due to the Pride and Prejudice link. Thanks for the giveaway opportunity.

Melissa Golden said...

Love Sarah Price books

Melissa Golden said...

Love Sarah Price books

Jakki Leatherberry said...

Excellent interview! :) Thanks so much, ladies. I have been looking for a book for my mom and I to read together. She loves Amish books and I love P&P and Austenesque novels. Sounds like a win/win to me! Thanks for the giveaway, and whether or not I win, I will be buying the book for my mom! :)

Monica P said...

Great interview! The story of you and your husband is so romantic! Just the impulse you had to even take that photo, to look at later...I love it. :)

I've been wanting to try an Amish romance story, and since P&P is my favorite, I can think of no better way to jump in than with an Amish P&P. Definitely going onto my tbr list. Thank you for the chance to win a copy.

Nancee said...

It's wonderful seeing Sarah's books published and available in numerous locations! A wonderful author to begin with, now I think that the rest of the world will sit up and take notice that Sarah Price is a novelist! Best wishes in all of your writing, Sarah!

Teresa said...

I can't wait to read your books! You would be a new author to me.

Stephanie Hamm said...

I actually saw this book on Amazon the other day and was tempted to buy it. I know nothing about the Amish community and I think a P&P version sounds really interesting. This is a great interview and I'm looking forward to reading the book.

loretta said...

It's exciting to see Sarah's books in my local bookstore--especially the first time. I may be as happy for her as she is. Would LOVE to have this set of books <3

Cheryl Baranski said...

What a wonderful giveaway! Would so love to win First Impressions!
Sounds like a wonderful book!
Love the cover!

CherylB1987@HOTMAIL.COM

Juanita Cook said...

Would love to win First Impressions.
Beautiful cover and Love Sarah's books.
seraphinangel7(at) aol(dot)com.

Karen Cushing said...

Excellent blog post and giveaway combining two literature forms that I enjoy very much. Thank you.

Kelli H. said...

Lovely post, ladies. I really enjoy Amish fiction and mix that with Jane Austen...sounds perfect!!:)

Lúthien84 said...

A very entertaining introduction to a new Austenesque author. I have not read any novels about the Amish community but for Jane Austen, I'll give it a try. Thanks, ladies!

debbie curto said...

I was one of Sarah's readers that hadn't read Jane Austin till her book came out! buyt after reading first impressions I did ! I would like to win a copy of the print book, I have a pdf file that Sarah gave me to do an interview and I know my mom would love to read it. She is a big fan of Sarah's

Lynda E. said...

This sounds fascinating. I wouldn't have thought about combining Amish fiction and Austen, but you have me intrigued. Thanks for the giveaway and I look forward to reading your work!

Anonymous said...

My favorite Jane Austen book is Pride and Prejudice. It is so romantic! I love to ponder what happens to the characters after the ending of the story each time I read it. A great read!

Anonymous said...

My favorite Jane Austen book is Pride and Prejudice. It is so romantic! I love to ponder what happens to the characters after the ending of the story each time I read it. A great read! Jclements69@outlook.com

Warmisunqu Austen said...

So interesting this plot!!! I will be glad to read it.
I have liked the interview, and it seems a charming book.
Thank you for the giveaway.

Linda Finn said...

I love Amish with a twist of tea and etiquette! I will forever be a Sarah Fan ! Love your books and your girl Katie !
Blessings
Linda Finn
Faithful Acres Books
http://www.faithfulacres.net

Anji said...

Ever since I first heard about the Amish community many years ago, I've been intrigued by it and their way of life. I guess it was brought to the attention of a larger audience due to Harrison Ford appearing in the film "Witness" some years ago.

To hear of an Austen variation involving this community is a most intriguing concept and I'd love to read it.

Thanks for the interview, ladies. Very enjoable.

NovElla Banannabelle said...

Great idea—I think Jane Austen can be translated into any society. I’ve never read an Amish story. This looks like the perfect introduction!

JWReesefam said...

I love reading the simplicity of the Amish life.

terri schmitt said...

I love this interview. If I didn't know anything about Jane Austin I would get my hands on a copy of at least one of her books. But Sarah Price is one of my fav writers in the Amish Christian genre. I read all her books and share them with framily. I read her books because I see myself in one of her characters or a story that goes directly to my heart. More than once I have to go for my tissues! Thank you Sarah Price

Z Banks said...

I love Jane Austen and haven't read any of Sarah Price's books, though I've followed her FB page for a couple years now. I'd like to read some of her books.

Lucy said...

I love Amish fiction, and this puts a new spin on it that I would love to read. TY for the chance.

Linda McFarland said...

Interesting post. Love Amish fiction that is true to the way the Amish live with research into how they live. Can't wait to read First Impressions and would love to win! Welcome Sarah and thanks for the opportunity! Linda
dmcfarl101(at)juno(dot)com

Linda McFarland said...

Great post! I love Amish fiction that is well-researched and true to their beliefs. Can't wait to read First Impressions and welcome Sarah, you are a new-to-me author! Would love to win, thanks for the opportunity! Linda
dmcfarl101(at)juno(dot)com

elaine f. said...

Can't wait to read this book! I love P&P and love Amish fiction - I'm sure this will become one of my favorite books!

Anwar Fazil said...

Top Expensive Cars, top speedy cars, top most popular cars in the world
TopAmazingCars.BlogSpot.Com

Syed Kazim Ali said...

Latest All Hot Current Affairs, Bollywood News updates, funny and lol pictures
HotCurrentAffairs

Ahsan Afsar said...

World Most Popular and Top Amazing Speedy Cars
TopAmazingCars.BlogSpot.Com

Syed Kazim Ali said...

Online Business with hourly profit, Just Invest and Rest
AllTimeProfit.com

Asif Ali said...




Find best Online Jobs on Facebook...
JobzCorner

Anwar Fazil said...

Earn Money with PayPal, Now you can earn 300% profit of your investment on every week, Join Now
AllTimeProfit.com

Ahsan Afsar said...

Online Jobs of Data Entry and Copy Pasting with Jobz Corner
JobzCorner.com

Syed Kazim Ali said...

Online Business with hourly profit, Just Invest and Rest
AllTimeProfit.com

Asif Ali said...

Best Free Earning Website where you can earn with just playing games and view some ads, join now
PaidVerts.com

ahmedraza moon said...

Get Facebook Likes on your fb page, likes on your facebook pictures, followers on your facebook id, shares of your facebook posts, every thing is available here, visit for more details
www.jobzcorner.com

Ahsan Afsar said...

Find best business plan from home without any work, just invest $1 and get 120% Total Profit within a week
EarningsClub.Com

Syed Kazim Ali said...

Best Business Club of Earnings, Hourly Stable Plans Like 1% Hourly for 120 Hours, Total 120% Profit within 5 Days
EarningsClub.com

bilal sabir ali said...

for best Online Jobs without any rejection, no time limit required, no investment requires, just spend few minutes and earn upto $35 daily
www.adsclickearning.com

waleedgazdar said...

for best Online Jobs without any rejection, no time limit required, no investment requires, just spend few minutes and earn upto $35 daily
www.adsclickearning.com

waleedgazdar said...

Find best business in the world where you can invest only $5 and get profit upto 7% daily for 60 Days, most popular website in ranking, Join now
www.hotprofitonline.com

Asif Ali said...

Deals on a way for you, Just Join this best deals ever where you can buy every product with 90% Discount, please join fast and get all products with discounted price
ValueDeals.pk

bilal sabir ali said...

The best Value Deals in pakistan where you get accessories, clothing, electronics, featured products, health care, hot deals for womens,
jewelry, lifestyle and much more deals for mens and womens, join this deal fast and get 90% Discount.
www.valuedeals.pk

waleedgazdar said...

Find best business in the world where you can invest only $10 and get 3000% Profit, most popular website in ranking, Join now
www.investorganization.com