Book Review: Jane and the Genius of the Place

Jane and the Genius of the Place by Stephanie Barron
Jane and the Genius of the Place (Jane Austen Mysteries, #4)
by Stephanie Barron

3 out of 5 stars


Jane Austen is visiting her brother and sister-in-law at Godmersham Park, when a mysterious lady is murdered at the Canterbury Races. As Justice of the Peace, Jane’s brother, Edward, must investigate the murder, and Jane is all eagerness to help solve the puzzle.

I really liked this story and the history behind it. There is quite a lot of real history woven into the story with Jane’s family and her acquaintances, but of course the murder mystery and Jane’s involvement in the investigation are entirely fictional.

The best part of this book is the close look at Jane’s day to day interactions with her family, her nieces and nephews, and especially her sister Cassandra. It’s fun to imagine what their family dynamic might have been like. Continue reading

Classic Book Review: Mansfield Park

Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
Mansfield Park
by Jane Austen

5 out of 5 stars

Fanny Price goes to live with her rich relatives, who make her feel inferior and criticize her. She befriends her cousin, Edmund, but is belittled by her cousins, Maria and Julia. When the Crawford siblings arrive as new neighbors, Maria and Julia compete for the attention of Mr. Henry Crawford, while Edmund gradually falls under the spell of the beautiful and wicked Miss Crawford. Only Fanny is undeceived by the Crawford’s pretty manners.

Marvelous story! Each time I reread it, I find something deeper in the story and the characters. But I always want to slap some sense into Edmund, until he realizes how delightful Fanny is.

Jane Austen’s writing never fails to amaze me. She has such a perceptive way of laying bare every thought and action of each character with exquisite insight into the little vexations and desires of human nature. Continue reading

Classic Book Review: Anne’s House of Dreams

Anne's House of Dreams by L.M. Montgomery
Anne’s House of Dreams (Anne of Green Gables, #5)
by L.M. Montgomery

5 out of 5 stars

Anne and Gilbert are married, and they settle into their first home while Gilbert starts his medical practice in a small harbor town on Prince Edward Island. They befriend their neighbors, Captain Jim, Leslie Moore, and the formidable Miss Cornelia.

Captain Jim tells them fascinating stories of his adventures at sea. Miss Cornelia hates men and criticizes them mercilessly. Leslie Moore has had a tragic life, and her heart is bitter. Each of these people find solace and compassion with Anne as they form strong friendships that help them through the storms of life. Continue reading