16.2.11

Book Review: Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler

Jane Mansfield, a gentleman's daughter in 1813 England, has long wished to escape a life in which career choices are limited to wife or maiden aunt. But awakening one morning in twenty-first-century Los Angeles- in the body of someone called Courtney Stone- is not exactly what she had in mind.
Jane must quickly get to grips with a world in which everyone thinks she is Courtney Stone: a dizzying world of horseless metal carriages, unrestricted clothing, tiny apartments, all manner of flirting and unheard of liberties for womankind. The only thing that Jane appears to have in common with Courtney is a love for the novels of Jane Austen. But are the wise words of her favourite novelist enough to guide her through this bewildering new world? And what is she to make of Courtney's attentive friend Wes, who is as attractive and confusing as the man who broke her heart back home?
As Courtney's romantic entanglements become her own, Jane wonders: would she actually be better off back in Regency England- and will she ever be able to return?
Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict is the parallel book to Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict which I reviewed here. Confessions follows Courtney Stone falling into the life of Jane Mansfield in Regency England and Rude Awakenings is the opposite as we see what happens when Jane Mansfield takes over Courtney Stone's life in the present day. I would urge you to read both books as they are great but you do not need to he read one of them to understand the other if you know what I mean.
As well as adjusting to being somebody completely new, Jane Mansfield also has to deal with all the modern surroundings in her new life. Used to travelling in horse-drawn carriages, Jane is petrified during her first outing in the car. She has no idea what a computer is and marvels at the cupboard in the kitchen that magically keeps the food cool.
Jane's new friends (believing Courtney has concussion) have to fill in the gaps. They explain how she has recently broken off her engagement to Frank as she caught him with her wedding cake designer. They explain how she has a seriously demanding boss with a job she hates but won't leave and also a very annoying mother. The one person who goes out of his way to help Courtney/Jane is Wes; he helps her get her life back on track and more importantly, how to use Google. However, Jane discovers that Wes covered up for Frank's cheating and now she doesn't know what to do. The only man she was beginning to have feelings for appears to be the last person she should trust.
Laurie Viera Rigler has written another highly entertaining book, I think it is a great idea to tell the story from Jane's perspective. This book makes you think twice about all of the home comforts and equality for women that we take for granted by seeing it through the eyes of a woman who previously wouldn't have imagined these things.
This book will appeal to many readers, especially those Jane Austen addicts out there, it's a really lovely read.

Many thanks to Bloomsbury for sending me a copy to review, Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict is out now.

7 comments:

Nadia said...

Lovely! I've been wanting to read this one for some time and after reading your post I know that I have to. I'll definitely pick up both books, even though you said we don't need to read both - it just seems like I'll enjoy both. Cheers, Dot!

Rebecca-Books said...

ha, this is such a good, original idea for a book!
I want to read this now...
Great review :)

Dot said...

Nadia- Hope that you enjoy them!

Rebecca- Thank you!

josbookjourney said...

I have seen this reviewed on some other sites, I think I might need to buy it! In fact probably both, they sound quite refreshing!

Dot said...

Jo- I think you should buy it too!

Meg said...

I enjoyed both of these books so much -- and Rude Awakenings definitely had me thinking about modern life differently! Lots of fun.

Dot said...

Meg- They do make you think don't they, whilst I think I would like a trip back to Regency England, I think there are a lot of modern comforts that I would miss!

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