Jane Austen Made Me Do It

Jane Austen Made Me Do It
Laurel Ann Nattress, ed.
Ballantine, 2011

I am a regular visitor to Laurel Ann's amazing blog Austenprose, and several of my blog buddies were finalists in the contest to have their short story featured in this anthology. So when I was emailed asking if I'd be willing to review Jane Austen Made Me Do It, I accepted with a happy grin. As with The Road to Pemberley, a variety of authors have written short stories in their own unique styles and voices - the difference is where Pemberley was limited to Pride and Prejudice-related stories, Jane Austen Made Me Do It features all things Jane: so long as there's a connection to our beloved Austen, it's fair game.

A sampling of my favorite stories:
  • “Jane Austen’s Nightmare”: Our dear Jane comes face to face with her characters, and is surprised to discover their true feelings. While a few (think Bingleys and Darcys) are happy with their stories, others are rather disgruntled. The nightmare experience however, provides the inspiration for a new story – about a Naval captain in Bath, with sad eyes, and a heroine the ripe old age of 27.
  • “Nothing Less than Fairy-Land”: Have you ever stopped to think about what it must have been like when Mr. Knightley moved in with Mr. Woodhouse?
  • "Jane Austen and the Mistletoe Kiss": This is just a sweet Christmassy story. It made me smile, and just feels like a cozy read - especially this time of year.
  • "When Only a Darcy Will Do": Any guy who takes that much time and effort to meet a girl? Yeah, he totally earns the 'Darcy' tag!
  • "Me and Mr. Darcy, Again...": I loved getting to see how the story picks up for characters I met in Me and Mr. Darcy a few years ago. So. Awesome.
  • "The Love Letter": This is the story that won the contest for inclusion, and it's simply beautiful. A good example of how Jane Austen can still play key roles in 'modern' lives (and romances).

This is a wonderful collection of Jane-related stories, and definitely one I want to keep handy for when I need a 'pick-me-up' without wanting to read a whole novel.

Book provided by author for review.

1 comment:

  1. I picked this up at the AGM and haven't read it yet. Thanks for reviewing it!