Thursday 31 January 2013


The Book

Kelsey Edmundson is a geek and proud of it. She makes no secret of her love for TV, movies, and, most especially, books. After a bad breakup, she retreats into her favorite novel, Pride and Prejudice, wishing she had some of the wit and spirit of Elizabeth Bennett.

One night at a party Kelsey meets handsome Australian bartender Mark Barnes. From then on, she always seems to run into him when she least expects it. No matter how Kelsey tries, she always seems to say the wrong thing.

After a particularly gaffe-filled evening around Mark, Kelsey is in desperate need of inspiration from Jane Austen. She falls asleep reading Darcy’s letter to Lizzy and awakens to find herself in an unfamiliar place that looks and sounds suspiciously like her favorite book. Has she somehow been transported into Pride and Prejudice, or is it just a dream?

As Kelsey tries to discover what’s happening to her, she must also discover her own heart. Is Mark Barnes destined to be her Mr. Darcy? In the end, she must decide whether attempting to become Elizabeth is worth the risk or if being Kelsey Edmundson is enough.

Monday 28 January 2013


Published 200 years ago in 1813, Jane Austen's most popular novel, Pride and Prejudice, turns 200 years old today but has never been fresher and more lovedPride and Prejudice is in many ways a record book. For instance, it  has never been out of print. It remains one of the best-read novels in the English language, with more than 20 million copies sold.
It's also the most filmed of the Austen novels, with 10 major films and TV miniseries, including the classic 1940 adaptation starring Laurence Olivier and Greer Garson with a script cowritten by no less a literary light than Aldous Huxley. Of course, for many of us Elizabeth has Jennifer Ehle's sweet smile and Mr Darcy Colin Firth dreamy stare. 
These days 'Jane Austen' is a very big brand name, masses of money are made in her name. Would she be offended? I don't think so. She would have loved to earn money by her quill, that was what she aspired to as a woman and as a writer: financial independence, freedom. 

Saturday 19 January 2013


The celebrative atmosphere all around the Net has made me look for the perfect read to join the festive mood in honour of the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice. What about this just released book by Australian Austen scholar, Susannah Fullerton? 

The Book - Celebrating Pride and Prejudice

“Think only of the past as its remembrance gives you pleasure,” Elizabeth Bennet tells Fitzwilliam Darcy in one of countless exhilarating scenes in Pride and Prejudice by Jane AustenThe remembrance of Austen’s brilliant work has given its readers pleasure for 200 years and is certain to do so for centuries to come. The book is incomparable for its wit, humor, and insights into how we think and act—and how our “first impressions” (the book’s initial title) can often be remarkably off-base. All of these facets are explored and commemorated in Celebrating Pride and Prejudice, written by preeminent Austen scholar Susannah Fullerton. Fullerton delves into what makes Pride and Prejudice such a groundbreaking masterpiece, including the story behind its creation (the first version may have been an epistolary novel written when Austen was only twenty), its reception upon publication, and its tremendous legacy, from the many films and miniseries inspired by the book (such as the 1995 BBC miniseries starring Colin Firth) to the even more numerous “sequels,” adaptations, mash-ups (zombies and vampires and the like), and pieces of merchandise, many of them very bizarre.

Wednesday 16 January 2013


Mary Jane Hathaway is the pen name of an award-nominated writer who spends the majority of her literary energy on subjects un-related to Jane Austen. A homeschooling mother of six young children who rarely wear shoes, she’s madly in love with a man who has never read Pride and Prejudice. She holds degrees in Religious Studies and Theoretical Linguistics, and has a Jane Austen quote on the back of her van. She can be reached on facebook at her regular author page of Virginia Carmichael (which is another pen name, because she’s just that cool). She is here today to meet the readers of My Jane Austen Book Club and present her new "Pride, Prejudice and Cheese Grits!"  Read her guest post and take your chances in the rafflecopter form below to win an e-book copy!

Hello, fellow friends of Miss Jane! I’m so excited to be talking about my new book, Pride, Prejudice and Cheese Grits”!
Wait, did the blogger reader count just slip? I think I heard the sound of hundreds of people quietly clicking past this post. But why, dear ones??
I hear a brave soul in the back yelling out something about that title… I can’t quite catch it…
Blasphemy? How can cheese grits, that so lowly of the Southern dishes, possibly occur in the same title with Austen’s wit and genius?
 Oh. I see. Well, let me explain.

Friday 11 January 2013


by guest blogger Allison Foster

If you are an Austen fan and you crave more “Austen” then I am here to recommend a couple other movies you might enjoy. While nothing can replace our favorites like Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility I have found a couple movies in the past which have not disappointed. You have to be a certain type of individual to like these kinds of movies: the English made or dramatic movies which move a little slower and add a lot of extra detail. This is what I love and crave and if you are of the same mind then I want to recommend what I consider a beautifully made movie that any Austen fan would love.


That movie is called North and South, written by Elizabeth Gaskell in 1855. It was a made for television movie in 2004 by the BBC. I had not seen this movie until a couple of years ago when I started watching other BBC shows and ran across this one. It was considered an industrial novel when it was written; it was written about relations between employers and workers of that time period.

Saturday 5 January 2013


I'm sure 2013 will be filled with great Austen fun since it is the year of Pride and Prejudice bicentenary and there have been  many great events announced already. 
There are also several interesting books coming out, though not all of them related to Pride and Prejudice, but all of them Austen-related . Among the ones coming out soon, here is one   I'm really curious about.

Paula Byrne, Jane Austen -  A Life in Small Things

Paula Byrne announced she was writing a book about Jane Austen last year when she brought to our attention a mysterious portrait of a lady she declared to be of our beloved Jane. Many Austenites were and still are skeptical, but, maybe , Ms Byrne will win them over with her new achievement: an unusual biography of their favourite writer.

Book Blurb from publishers Harper Collins site

Who was the real Jane Austen? Overturning the traditional portrait of the author as conventional and genteel, bestseller Paula Byrne’s landmark biography reveals the real woman behind the books.

In this new biography, best-selling author Paula Byrne (bestselling author of Perdita, Mad World) explores the forces that shaped the interior life of Britain’s most beloved novelist: her father’s religious faith, her mother’s aristocratic pedigree, her eldest brother’s adoption, her other brothers’ naval and military experiences, her relatives in the East and West Indies, her cousin who lived through the trauma of the French Revolution, the family’s 
amateur theatricals, the female novelists she admired, her 

Wednesday 2 January 2013


Syrie James, author of The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen, a brilliant Austen-inspired novel (my review) ,  is my guest today to discuss  why Jane Austen captures her writing imagination. Take your chances to win a copy of the book using the rafflecopter form below. The contest is for US readers only and ends on January 10th. Good luck!

I love Jane Austen because her books transport us to another world, another time and place—that doesn't seem that far away. Jane Austen doesn't need elaborate plot lines, exotic locales, or a lot of action to create the most engaging, entertaining, funny, and insightful stories I have ever read.

It doesn’t hurt that Austen wrote about the English gentry class at a time when men had impeccable manners and wore tight breeches, tailcoats, and cravats (which are eminently sexy), ladies wore bewitching, gossamer gowns, and the primary social entertainment was to dance at a ball. But it’s the stories themselves that make Austen great, and more importantly, the characters she created.

Austen is an acute observer of people. Although her novels take place two hundred years ago, her characters are people we recognize; they all wrestle with social and emotional problems that we still confront on a daily basis. She sees straight through people’s pretensions, hypocrisies, politeness, and correctness to reveal their true opinions and motivations. Her characters’ inconsistencies and absurdities become fodder for her wit and humor—sometimes, they are so subtly drawn that it can take a while to truly appreciate what makes them so memorable and marvelous—but memorable and marvelous they are.