Hello book loving friends,
Happy Book Lovers Day! I thought what better way to celebrate than with another Library post. Dang when was the last time I did one of these posts? Well I've been sitting on the idea of this one since last year, so today I'm finally going to do this. This whole post will be Jane Austen related. I'll be doing book reviews of Austen related books and share some Austen related links. So let's jump into it!
The books I'll be reviewing today are the from the Jane Fairfax series by Michael Thomas Ford. Now over the years I've seen Jane Austen's work done in various interesting ways, but this series puts a spin on the author herself. The Jane Austen in this series died way before her actual death, she was actually turned into a vampire a year before her "death". Well it's now modern times and Jane is now a simple book shop owner in New York state going by the name Jane Fairfax. Sound good so far? Well let's dive into this series, keep in mind I read these last year, and made the mistake of not writing my reviews close to the time of my reading it, so bare with me.
So as I said Jane is a book store owner in a small town, where she is getting to experience the Austen fandom at work. Her classics are popular as ever, there's weird Austen related books and items that she's now forced to sell in her store, and because she's "dead" she gets none of the royalties. On top of all of this she's been trying to get her next masterpiece publish for centuries, and it has been rejected over a hundred times. Just when it seems like she will never reclaim her former glory, she's given a chance. Of course old and new troubles find a way into her life.
I love this unique take on Jane Austen, she's a vampire first of all. I mean yeah I seen her works get monstrous makeovers , but I don't think I've seen the author herself get one. I like seeing how Ford depicts Austen's opinions on what her work has brought to life. I can't tell you how many times I wonder what creators of the classics would think of what their works become and give birth to. I love also seeing Ford's portrayal of other classic writers who aren't so dead. It's interesting to see what immortality and the modern world does to our favorites. Also the whole Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte rivalry is touched upon in this book. Is their actually like some rivalry between fans of the two? Cause I feel like a lot of book themed works has their fans or the authors in some sort of rivalry. *ok found this article on seems Charlotte had some opinions on Austen's work. From what I can tell by this other article I found it could be cause two of the Bronte sister's works kept getting compared and over shadowed by Austen's work. At least that's what I take from it. Well explains so much in this book.* Any who great start to a series it had me from the description I read on the library's website.
Jane's life is going good she's got a boyfriend, she's found literary success once again, one who's delights she can enjoy. Of course in every life some rain must fall. One being her new book is being made into a movie that's being filmed in her new hometown, and if that wasn't disrupting her life enough, her new beau is going to introduce her to his Mother. Which is just fun for Jane cause she's having to pass off as a normal modern day human! You all thought you had bad meet the Mom stories, Jane has it worse.
Also, poor Jane having to deal with the joys of modern fandom: excited fanatics, cosplayers, and people trying to milk off all it. I'm not 100 percent sure people back in the Regency Era took to dressing like book characters, of course I could be wrong, I mean I've never really looked into such this so I could be wrong. If I am let me know in the comments. But I mean if we see it from Jane's point of view, fame and how her work is marketed in her era compared to the modern era has to be vastly different. I mean one movies didn't exist so having your book propelled by having movie made of it was not an option, the first steps to movie making wouldn't happen till after real world Jane's death. So book's Jane had to feel bit overwhelmed. Back in the first book she had to attend a convention and do a panel, that must been different, was there an equivalent to these things back in Jane's day?
Well Jane and her Beau are getting hitched. Due to the drama that is Jane's life they decided to do it in Europe. While their Jane learns some shocking secrets about her future husbands family, and a possibility to reclaim humanity.
This was a good ending to the trilogy, awesome surprises, all good and tidied up at the end. But the ending also made me sad, which is weird, cause Jane is on the path to a potentially happy ending life, but I felt sad about it. I, maybe cause the possibility that she might be giving up the things that made her story up to this point a strange delightful journey, it could also just be the story ending I don't know.
So that's our journey into the Jane Fairfax trilogy. I've totally added this books to the list of books I wanna add to my permanent library collection. If your an Austenite and a vampire fan then you really need to check out this series. I really hope Ford does more in this verse. Maybe do some books focusing on some of the other characters. I'd love to see from some of the other vampire Authors.
Okay now I'll share some of my favorite Austen items I've come across for your digital window shopping pleasure, or your actual shopping pleasure if you have the monies.
First of all is this lovely edition of Pride and Prejudice by Juniper books. I fell in love with this edition when I saw it at Michael's and after some hunting I found it again, It's my favorite book by her, but I've yet to obtain a physical copy, and this is the one I want for my library.
Next is this lovely leather journal by Soothi that bares an Austen quote. I love a journal, ask my family and friends. Gotta thank Facebook ads for leading me to this gem.
Things to Watch
While watching an episode of Felicia Day's Flog a while back (I just linked to the playlist cause I have no clue which ep it is), she mentioned a show called The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. I eventually checked it out and fell in love. It's basically a modern retelling of Pride and Prejudice where Lizzie is a college girl making a vlog, but the story isn't just vlogs, it was a multimedia event. Chracters had tumblr and twitter accounts that helped move the story along as if these characters really existed in our time, thankfully Pemberly Digital has gathered all the story across the platforms in order they appeared so you can follow it. I also encourage you to watch Emma Approved and Welcome to Sandition, which are retellings of Emma and Sandition, and take place in the same universe as The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. I highly recommend checking this out.
Well after for many hours I have successfully completed an actual post! Yay me! To close this post all I can say if if you haven't read any of Austen's works give them a try, you maybe surprise. I mean back in high school if you told me I was going to be a fan of her books and actually have them in my library, I probably wouldn't have believed you. Glad I gave it a try, they are good, and I can see why they are classics.
I hope you have a good week, read lots, God bless, and I love you Geek Tribe.