Everyone should marry once for love – Even Jane Austen
Jane Austen, single and seemingly comfortable in the role of clergyman’s daughter and aspiring writer in the early 1800s, tells friends and family to hold out for true affection in any prospective relationship. Everybody, she says, has a right to marry once in their lives for love.
But when, after a series of disappointing relationships, the prospect of true love arrives for her, will she have the courage to act? The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen re-imagines the life of England’s archetypal female by exploring what might have happened if she had ever married. It shows how a meaningful, caring relationship would have changed her as a person and a writer.
It also takes her beyond England’s tranquil country villages and plunges her info what the Regency era was really about: great explorations and scientific advances, political foment, and an unceasing, bloody war.
In such times, can love—can marriage—triumph?
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I love the novels of Jane Austen. They are comfort reads for me. I have print editions but also carry them in e-book format on my phone. That said, I have read relatively little about Jane Austen's life, so I found the premise of The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen particularly intriguing.
This novel tells an alternate history of Jane Austen's life and love, with a glimpse at how this difference might have effected her writing.
It was a pleasure to spend time with Jane Austen and a lively cast of characters in this novel. I enjoyed the way Jane approached the world, with grace and wit. I also enjoyed her interplay with Ashton Dennis. Their balloon ride was my favorite scene in the novel -- and it was great fun.
This story is beautifully told. The author's voice is elegant and quick, and invokes the spirit of Jane Austen's writing.
The historical details of this novel were fascinating. I loved descriptions like this:
"When Jane and Cassandra stepped out the front door of their house, every imaginable noise of the city assaulted them. Vendors hawked their wares: muffins, milk, cheese, newspapers. 'Hot spice gingerbread, smoking hot!' cried one. 'Milk below, maids!' cried another - though the ill-fed city cows produced thin milk. Housewives and servants haggled with the peddlers over the prices of all the food needed for the day's meals, a reminder that living costs were higher in Bath because the Austens could not grow their own food as they had in Stevenson. Carriages clattered in and out of the entrance to the Sydney Hotel across the street. Banging and thumping came from the tavern behind them, where workers hauled in barrels of fresh beer and mead. The crowds made Jane long to turn toward the open fields -- toward the sun -- rather than walk into the heart of the city" (p. 10).
This is the first of a three part series, and I look forward to continuing the story. I recommend The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen highly for Janeites, literature lovers, and fans of historical fiction.
Whether his subject is literature, history, or science, Collins Hemingway has a passion for the art of creative investigation. For him, the most compelling fiction deeply explores the heart and soul of its characters, while also engaging them in the complex and often dangerous world in which they have a stake. He wants to explore all that goes into people’s lives and everything that makes tThe hem complete though fallible human beings. His fiction is shaped by the language of the heart and an abiding regard for courage in the face of adversity.
As a nonfiction book author, Hemingway has worked alongside some of the world’s thought leaders on topics as diverse as corporate culture and ethics; the Internet and mobile technology; the ins and outs of the retail trade; and the cognitive potential of the brain. Best known for the #1 best-selling book on business and technology, Business @ the Speed of Thought, which he coauthored with Bill Gates, he has earned a reputation for tackling challenging subjects with clarity and insight, writing for the nontechnical but intelligent reader.
Hemingway has published shorter nonfiction on topics including computer technology, medicine, and aviation, and he has written award-winning journalism.
Published books include The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen trilogy, Business @ the Speed of Thought, with Bill Gates, Built for Growth, with Arthur Rubinfeld, What Happy Companies Know, with Dan Baker and Cathy Greenberg, Maximum Brainpower, with Shlomo Breznitz, and The Fifth Wave, with Robert Marcus.
Hemingway lives in Bend, Oregon, with his wife, Wendy. Together they have three adult sons and three granddaughters. He supports the Oregon Community Foundation and other civic organizations engaged in conservation and social services in Central Oregon.
For more information please visit Collins Hemingway’s website and blog. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Goodreads.
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The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen
I received a copy of this book from Historical Fiction Virtual Blog Tours.
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