My Thoughts: This was a charming story about Jane Eyre and the possibility that Mr. Darcy existed. Turned out that this was a sequel but Sally Smith O'Rourke did a decent job in summarizing what happened in the first book, though I think I would have gotten more out of it if I have read the first book. But as a stand-alone, it was a pretty good.
I found the story to be interesting. I liked the idea that a modern day Mr. Darcy went back in time and got to meet Jane Austen. I also enjoyed the fact that the outcomes between these two characters was more realistic than a hopeful "what if". I did wished though I got to read more between them instead of how Jane lived and how Mr. Darcy tried to move on with his life with a woman named Eliza.
This story was simple and informative about regency era. There was not much action nor major issues to solve in the story. Fitz Darcy just had to concern himself to prove his love for Eliza. Also, a lot of the story dealt with describing how Jane's life was. I got to learn more about women's lives back then.
However, there were a few quirks for me that had me lower my rating. First, I did not like Eliza's character. She was jealous and cynical when it came to love. I found her constant worry about Darcy's love for her and her jealousy towards his affection to Jane to be tiresome. Next, the encounter between Eliza and Jane did not appear to be realistic. I just saw it as a way to give Mr. Darcy the go-ahead to be with Eliza. Last, I felt that the story was too simple for my taste. I did admire though what O'Rourke do to explain the reason behind Jane's Mr. Darcy.
Overall, this was a decent book. It would have been better if I read the first book but I still recommend this to others who are fans of Jane Austen. I give it:
Praise for Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen
O’Rourke creates a world that defies cynicism and demands suspension of disbelief – even in this age of doubt and hyper-realism. Sheer escapism at its best. Clever, charming and affectionate. ~Jocelyn Bury …the reader must tenaciously read on rather than put the book down to satisfy their hunger for the story to resolve, which it does in characteristically Jane Austen fashion. ~Erin Murdock
In Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen, author Sally Smith O’Rourke creates a compelling story that investigates what and who might have inspired Jane Austen. While the story line is certainly far-fetched, it is a truly unique idea, one that captivated this reader until the very last page. ~Meg Massey
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