Mar 242017
 

What If Fanny Was Tired of Being Called Ungrateful?

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Source: Review Copy from Author

What a novel experience it is to read a variation for Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park! What happens in a Mansfield Park variation? Is it like a Pride and Prejudice variation – do Fanny and Edmund still end up together (just traveling a different path)? Or does the author shake things up a little more?

In Lona Manning’s contemplative and inventive variation she poses the questions:

  • What if “a contrary wind” delayed Sit Thomas’s return to Mansfield Park by a few weeks?
  • What if the rehearsals of Lover’s Vows continued unimpeded?
  • What if Fanny was tired of being told she was an ungrateful burden to the Bertram family and decided to take control of her own future?

Continue reading »

Mar 012017
 

GP

Hi readers!  I’m so excited to welcome author Kyra Kramer to Austenesque Reviews today! Kyra may be a brand new author to some of you because her lovely new release Mansfield Parsonage just came out last month!  It looks to be a very interesting story as it is a retelling of Mansfield Park from the perspective of bad-girl, Mary Crawford!  Kyra is sharing a little about what sets Mansfield Park a part a little from Jane Austen’s other novels and some excerpts from Mansfield Parsonage.  We hope you enjoy!

Beneath the Surface of Mansfield Park

Mansfield Park is one of Austen’s least-loved novels, but it is also the one with the deepest undercurrents swirling under its surface. From slavery to incest, the novel is discursive in a way most of her other works are not and this narrative morality shows up in places where you least expect it.

  1. It was anti-slavery.

The fact that Sir Thomas Bertram owns a plantation in Antigua, and therefore almost certainly owns slaves, could lead one to believe that Austen was not strongly pro-abolition. That supposition would be wrong, however … but her method of undercutting slave-ownership was much more apparent to her contemporary readers than her modern ones. A case in point is the fact that the newlywed Mr and Mrs Rushworth take a house in Wimpole Street. To the modern reader this means little, except to think they could afford a large house in London. To Austen’s audience, Wimpole Street was a byword for slave-owners’ vice. In my novel, Mansfield Parsonage, I try to make this connection clear again when Mary Crawford writes to Fanny Price that the Rushworth’s new home once belonged to Lady Lascelles: Continue reading »

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 »