Book Review: Jane In Love by Rachel Givney

Published in Australia on the 4th February, 2020 by Michael Joseph, an imprint of Penguin Random House.

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Australian RRP: $32.99

Format: Trade Paperback

ISBN: 9780143794097

Genre: Contemporary Romance Fiction.

Page Count: 416

My Rating:

Sypnosis from Penguin Books Australia

Jane Austen time-travels to the future and falls in love. But will she choose happiness in the present, or her career as a writer in the past?

‘Artfully written and engaging, Jane in Love is a lively effusion of wit and humour.’ – Graeme Simsion

At age twenty-eight, Jane Austen should be seeking a suitable husband, but all she wants to do is write. She is forced to take extreme measures in her quest to find true love – which lands her in the most extraordinary of circumstances.

Magically, she finds herself in modern-day England, where horseless steel carriages line the streets and people wear very little clothing. She forms a new best friend in fading film star Sofia Wentworth, and a genuine love interest in Sofia’s brother Fred, who has the audacity to be handsome, clever and kind-hearted.

She is also delighted to discover that she is now a famous writer, a published author of six novels and beloved around the globe. But as Jane’s romance with Fred blossoms, her presence in the literary world starts to waver. She must find a way to stop herself disappearing from history before it’s too late.

A modern-day reimagining of the life of one of the world’s most celebrated writers, this wonderfully witty romantic comedy offers a new side to Jane’s story, which sees her having to choose between true love in the present and her career as a writer in the past.

My Review:

I received a copy of Jane In Love from Penguin Books Australia in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

Oh, this was such a lovely book! It was so much fun to read, so fast paced and engaging and just completely unique! I mean its Jane Austen travelling to the year 2020 on a quest to find her true love, but its only when she gets comfortable in the modern world and more so as her romance with Fred starts to bloom, that she finds her books, her literary presence, vanishing into dust!

Firstly, let’s just talk about reading about Jane Austen experiencing the modern day! It was just really unlike anything I’d read before and I just loved it, honestly can you imagine an iconic literary figure being projected into the modern world by some timey-wimey wonder?!

More so, the fact that Jane as a character wasn’t aware of her future self’s fame as a writer, it was just so sweet reading about her reaction when she finds out that her books are taught on the school curriculum, worldwide no less? Jane’s reactions to other things too were naturally quite fun too, such as when she learns that women can be any profession they wish, such as Doctors or Lawyers (or writers!), as naturally in her time, women were very limited to what they could do, or really what society would deem acceptable for them (which was only really domestic duties, getting an esteemed marriage and such).

Throughout the book, even though I had a hunch of how it should end, I honestly wasn’t sure how it would end! I definitely found myself catching on to the characters’ emotions as the novel drew to a close, it was definitely quite the bittersweet reading experience! As I reached the ending too, I found myself growing quite fond of Sofia too, a character who truthfully I found quite tiresome in terms of how she was at times so fiercely determined to reclaim her clearly good for nothing husband (well okay, he’s a celebrated Director of movies, but I didn’t really care for him, I felt like he was a bit (no, a lot!), of a scoundrel to Sofia, messing around with her when she thinks they might actually reconcile.

Just keeping to Sofia’s character for the moment, because what I absolutely loved throughout Jane In Love was the friendship between Sofia and Jane! It was just so lovely and it really wonderfully developed from the initial moments when Sofia literally thought she was being played by her production company by hiring a Jane Austen impersonator! I cannot even begin to tell you all how much I was anticipating the moment when Sofia would realise that Jane Austen was in fact, well, Jane Austen!

Fred was an absolute sweetheart, such a lovely counterpart to Jane Austen, it was so sweet reading her experience something that she never really thought she would, to uncover a tenderness that is all kinds of bittersweet for particularly one very powerful reason, but oh, reading about their relationship developing from apparent banter and disdain but then how it grew into adoration from both parties, just, ahhh, my heart! However, I must admit that there was a teeny bit of frustration in me for like half a second when I felt like things may be veering in a direction that would not be expected, but honestly it was quite hard to guess what might actually happen! Which of course, made Jane In Love all the more unique!

There are also, to me, a couple side characters worth mentioning, too. There’s a Librarian, who’s pretty much all sorts of amazing and he utilises detective work in terms of helping Sofia find a very important letter to help Jane return home, (Jane asks him if he’s a Detective and he replies “I’m a Librarian” and it just made me smile so much, knowing that Librarians sometimes find themselves doing some low-key detective work, it’s just all kinds of brilliant! There’s also one of Sofia’s closest friends and confidante at work, who’s revealed to be a gay, married man and honestly Jane’s reactions learning that men can marry men and upon hearing that the gentleman hasn’t had a proper relationship with his Father for a horribly large number of years, but oh, what she says to him is just so wonderfully wholesome and accepting!

If we veer back slightly to the topic of Jane Austen herself though, I’ve read only Pride and Prejudice and Sense And Sensibility (I absolutely adore both!) and honestly do really need to read her other books too, but honestly I think that this book can definitely be enjoyed (and really ought to be enjoyed!) by everyone, regardless of how much or how little they’ve read of Jane Austen!

I actually think I can’t really go into more details of the story too much, because I really don’t want to spoil anything! I mean, I imagine you might have your own predictions about what might happen in this novel, but honestly it’s the perfect Summery addition to your to be read list! It’s just so quirky and unique and a whole lot of fun with a healthy amount of sweetness throw in, it’s definitely one I will not be forgetting anytime soon!

Happy Reading,


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