Feb 152017
 

Happy Wednesday, readers! Today, Austenesque Reviews is paid a visit from an author who may be new to some of you – Lona Manning, who just recently published a Mansfield Park variation titled A Contrary Wind!  A new release I am very excited about because while I have read some sequels and modern-day adaptations for Mansfield Park, I’ve yet to read a variation for it!  It seems like variations tend to be written more for Pride and Prejudice than any other Jane Austen novel.  I hope you enjoy meeting Lona and this lovely excerpt she is sharing today! 🙂

Mrs. Norris was, in her own way, as happy as she had ever been, for she was busy from morning ‘til night, living entirely at Mansfield Park, directing the servants, ordering the dinners, and supervising the sewing of the costumes and curtains. She also felt it was necessary for her to stay at Lady Bertram’s side in the event that doleful news arrived concerning Sir Thomas – perhaps he would perish at sea, or be stricken by the fevers and distempers which carried away so many of his countrymen in tropical climes – and in such case, she, Lady Bertram’s elder sister, would naturally be the rod and staff of the stricken family. She was confiding some of her gloomier prognostications to Mrs. Grant, who was sitting with Lady Bertram and Mrs. Norris after the conclusion of a rehearsal of the first act of the play, while Fanny, quite forgotten, was stitching on Anhalt’s costume by candlelight at her own little worktable. For a young girl, every trifling thing connected with one’s beloved transmits pleasure, so the thought that she held in her hands a garment to be worn by Edmund gave her a sweet sensation, mixed with sorrow, that she would not have exchanged for the world. So abstracted was she in her thoughts, it was in fact a wonder that some portion of the conversation of the ladies attracted her notice. Continue reading »

Nov 202015
 

The Trouble with FlirtingRelevant and Fresh Takes on Jane Austen!

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars!

Source: Purchased

To date, Claire LaZebnik has published four refreshing and clever Young Adult retellings of Jane Austen’s novels – Epic Fail (Pride and Prejudice), The Trouble With Flirting (Mansfield Park), The Last Best Kiss (Persuasion) and Wrong About the Guy (Emma) – and I sincerely hope she continues to write more! In this insightful and authentic retelling of Mansfield Park, Franny Pearson is a rising high school senior from a non-wealthy, divorced family looking for a summer job. Her mom arranges for her to assist her aunt with making and altering costumes for a summer theatre program at Mansfield College.

Upon arrival Franny recognizes some familiar thespians – Julia Braverman, a friend she lost touch with, and her brother Alex, who she had a monster-crush on several years ago. Franny hopes a little romance might finally happen between her and Alex this summer, but her hopes are dashed as he seems to be immediately attracted to the sophisticated and gorgeous Isabella Zevallos. Franny feelings of disappointment and dejection start to disappear when super-flirtatious and fun Harry Cartwright starts paying her some serious attention over the other girls, the question is are his intentions as serious… Continue reading »

Oct 132014
 

Mansfield Park RevisitedA Mansfield Park Sequel without Fanny and Edmund

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Source: Purchased

TYPE OF AUSTENESQUE NOVEL: Sequel to Mansfield Park, Minor Character

TIME FRAME: Begins 4 years after the close of Mansfield Park

MAIN CHARACTERS: Susan Price, Tom Bertram, Mrs. Julia Yates, Lady Bertram, Henry Crawford, Mary Crawford, Mr. Wadham (a reverend filling in for Edmund temporarily) and Mrs. Osbourne (Mr. Wadham’s sister who is helpful and devoted to caring for her neighbors),

WHY I WANTED TO READ THIS NOVEL:

  • In celebration of Mansfield Park‘s Bicentennial, I thought I should read at least 1 Mansfield Park inspired Austenesque novel this year
  • I’ve read so few MP inspired novels – just 4!
  • I’ve read Jane Fairfax by Joan Aiken and loved it!!! It was my first JAFF ever!
  • You voted for it! This book won over Ladysmead by Jane Gillespie in my blog poll.

Continue reading »