Our Jane Can Bite!
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Publisher
While attending the Basingstoke Assembly with her dear sister Cassandra and good friend Catherine Bigg, Jane Austen encounters a fascinating and mysterious group of men and women from London. These people are impeccably dressed and exceedingly attractive, yet do not possess a reflection. Jane discerns that these guests are members of The Damned. One of these mysterious strangers, Mr. Smith a.k.a William, dances with Jane and after engaging in an energetic debate with her about vampires and immortality decides to turn her into a vampire. Now Jane is hungry for blood, able to hear the thoughts of others, and in possession of superior strength and beauty. What will our beloved authoress do?
Upon discovering that his daughter is a vampire, Mr. Austen decides to travel to Bath and have Jane take the waters in hopes of it curing her from this affliction. Before Jane has a chance to sample the waters, the French armies of Napoleon invade Bath! Jane is faced with multiple dilemmas as her family is now forced to remain in Bath against their will, board French officers, and possibly face the infamous guillotine. Because of Jane’s weakened state and lack of nourishment (blood), she is forced to seek out her own kind, and becomes ensconced in an establishment of vampires.
Even though Jane Austen is a well-mannered clergyman’s daughter, she has much to learn about vampire etiquette and protocol. From her Bearleader (vampire mentor) Jane learns how to properly drink someone’s blood, how to hide in shadows, and how to attack. As Jane’s band of vampire friends plot to overthrow France’s hold on Bath, she discovers that vampires aren’t just immoral, lewd self-seeking reprobates. Especially the one vampire who has captured her heart! Jane finds that she is torn between two worlds. The more time she spends with The Damned the harder it becomes to return to her family. In addition, Jane has finally found the love and companionship she has been seeking for her whole life. Should she follow her heart and remain one of The Damned? What would become of her writing? What about her family?
Reading Jane and the Damned was a thrilling and adventurous experience! From ambushing and spying on French armies to getting arrested and facing the guillotine, our not-so-dainty-and-delicate-Jane does it all! Ms. Mullany did an adept job of combing true events and people from Jane Austen’s life with French armies and vampires. While I admired Ms. Mullany’s portrayal of our beloved Jane, at times I felt she seemed a little unlike the famous authoress I’ve read about. Perhaps this is because she didn’t do a lot of writing in this novel or maybe it is because she is a vampire…