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Saturday, March 1, 2008

The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen

The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James, 2008, Avon, a division of HarperCollins, $13.95.

Yes, I freely admit to being a Jane Austen fan, er freak! And I have been in hog heaven every Sunday night this Winter while PBS has aired adaptations of her novels. Last Sunday was the final installment of Pride & Prejudice, one of my all time favorite stories, and it was Oscar night - my TV remote got an excellent workout!

I am not a rabid Jane Austen purist, and I am happy reading all the recent books pertaining to Austen, i.e. The Jane Austen Book Club, Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, Austenland, etc. So I was thrilled when Maggie (another awesome bookseller) alerted me to this new historical fiction book about Jane Austen's life...more importantly, her romantic life. Not much is known about Austen's personal life regarding any romances, but historians have found two promising periods of her life where we all hope she experienced the type of love that she so expertly inspired in her romantic tales.

This story gives us one such scenario. I did have a hard time reading this book and remembering it was only fiction. I so want to hope Jane Austen truly had a great love affair within her short life - I want to believe she had a kiss that knocked her socks off! And this story did that and more for my heart. 4 stars from this hopeless romantic bookseller!