Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James

The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen is a fictional memoir. It does a great job at making you feel like it's a real memoir, with an 'Editor's Forward' at the beginning explaining how an old chest was found bricked up behind a wall in the attic of Chawton Manor House – a home owned by Jane's brother Edward. There are also running footnotes throughout the book. All of this giving the impression that this is a long lost memoir written by Jane. Only at the very end is the spell broken.

I really love this. It almost read like an Austen novel. And even though this was fiction, I felt like it was entirely plausible to have happened.

The book focused on two things: Jane process in novel writing, and her feelings of love for a gentleman. I don't think I need to post spoiler warnings on how both of those ended. Throughout Jane's life, traveling here and there, she has experiences and meets people that she records later in her memoirs. Many of these are similar to events that happened in all of Jane's novels. It was a neat thing, thinking that events and people in Jane's life inspired the scenes and characters in her book.

I highly recommend this to Jane fans. I found it to be a highly refreshing novel.


Ash said...

I read Syrie James' book, The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte, and really enjoyed it! Glad to hear this one is good as well.

Joanne said...

This was one of my favorite books from last year; Syrie James does a wonderful job of capturing the spirit of Austen. Her other books about Charlotte Bronte and Mina Harker are very good, as well.

Meredith said...

I loved this one! I'm glad you enjoyed it too! Ms. James is a wonderful author, don't you just wish a love like this was true for Jane Austen?

Svea Love said...

I am so excited this is such a great read! This has been on my shelf for a few months; I shall move it up on my TBR pile :)