Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Midnight in Austenland

by Shannon Hale
New York : Bloomsbury USA, 2012.

Charlotte Kinder is not heroine material. She's a divorced mother of two who reads Agatha Christie novels, and after her husband had an affair and left her, her heart's pretty numb. But after she breaks out of her mystery fix to read Jane Austen, she decides to go off to Austenland in which can act like one of Austen's beloved heroines for two weeks while being romanced by a dashing gentlemen - all in Regency-appropriate behavior (and capped with a ball).

Shannon Hale may be better known for her teen fantasy books, but her chick lit is just as much fun. In this book, as in Austenland, she proves how much of an Austen fan she is, even while providing a fun, modern story in its own right. Unbelievable at times? Oh sure, but I didn't really care in the end. I didn't remember much of what happened in the first book in the series, but Midnight in Austenland stands just fine on its own. I especially enjoyed the clear references to Northanger Abbey and laughed out loud at Charlotte's "Inner Thoughts" talking back to her.

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