According to Jane by Marilyn Brant
Published by Kensington Books
It isn’t everyone that gets the spirit voice of a favorite dead author whispering advice in her ear. Ellie, however, is just that lucky – or unlucky, perhaps, since Jane Austen can be a bit bossy from time to time. Ever since she first read Austen in class in high school, Ellie has shared her brain with the author. Most frequently, Austen, arguably the author of the most famous romantic storylines in the English-speaking world, gives Ellie love advice, perhaps a bit strange coming from a woman who lived at the turn of the 19th century and never married. What Jane really wants is to help Ellie avoid a boy she is sure is Ellie’s Mr. Wickham and help her find her very own Mr. Darcy.
I’m not really a huge fan of the whole Jane Austen spinoff thing. I enjoy Austen, but I’ve never read “The Jane Austen Book Club” or any of the books about the women so obsessed with Austen that they end up trapped in the world she created, etc. I know people love it, but it feels very reminiscent of fanfic to me, and that’s just not my thing. “According to Jane,” however, did not have that feel. Instead, it seemed to be a new take on “Pride and Prejudice” with a modern setting, more akin to “Bridget Jones’ Diary” than “Lost in Austen.”
“According to Jane” is a fun, lighthearted read. Of course I realized that it is a re-imagining of “Pride and Prejudice,” the ending became predictable, but that is to be expected, and Brant still took me on plenty of unexpected twists and turns to get me there. I initially had a bit of a problem with Jane’s voice – it seemed very authentic, but at the same time was very jarring compared to the modern voice of the rest of the novel – but once I grew accustomed to it, it no longer bothered me.
If you like re-imaginings of the classics or are an Austen-phile, pick up “According to Jane,” it is a fun read.
Marilyn Brant’s website
Other Books by Marilyn Brant:
“Friday Mornings at Nine”
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