"The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." — Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

Friday, September 10, 2010

Jane Bites Back by Michael Thomas Ford

Please note: Links pointing to Amazon contain my affiliate ID. Sales resulting from clicks on those links will earn me a percentage of the purchase price. So buy and read now!

Summary: Jane Austen has been quietly living as a vampire and trying to get published again.

It is a truth universally acknowledges that Jane Austen is still alive today… as a vampire.

Oh, yes.

What a fun read. It met needs I didn’t even know I had. It meets my enthusiasm for Jane Austen and enhances my appreciation for her flawed, proud and tender characters. It’s not as good as Pride and Prejudice, but it’s a fun read, with a great blend of a few of my favorite subjects.

Jane Austen? Check.
A book store? Check.
Vampires? Check!

And it’s funny, too.

During a clandestine trip to the English lake district, Lord Byron (yes, the poet) seduces Jane Austen and then bites her, making her into a vampire. Jane stages her death in her time period and then runs away to America where she’s been quietly living all this time.

Jane’s also been struggling in modern-day America to publish what she thinks is her best book yet. She has been rejected by 116 editors. Jane Austen – arguably the most popular female writer of all time – keeps getting rejected. The real irony is that Jane Austen now is the owner of a bookstore in New England and suffers little pangs of agony when she sees another Jane Austen-themed book fly off her shelves. The royalties! The gimmicks! The dolls!? And why does every moron and her sister get a book deal but not Jane?

And one day, Jane’s life changes. A publisher wants her book. A tall, dark handsome publisher who thinks Jane is brilliant and can’t wait to publish more of her books. Jane’s finally getting to realize her dream. And in walks Lord Byron, renamed Brian. He’s finally decided that he and Jane should be a vampire power couple, and he’ll use his considerable charms to ensure Jane complies. The banter between two world-famous writers is delightful.
'"I don’t love you,” she said firmly.
Once more Byron laughed at her. “Who said anything about love?” he replied. We’re both far too old to believe in happily ever after, Jane.”
Perhaps you don’t,” said Jane.
Byron smiled. “Man’s love is of man’s life a thing apart. ‘Tis a woman’s whole existence.”
“Stop quoting yourself,” Jane said. “It’s vain even for you."'
You don’t have to be a Jane Austin fan to enjoy this book, but it certainly helps. And wait until you find out about Charlotte Bronte.

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