I literally JUST finished "According to Jane" by Marilyn Brant and.. whoa! I received this as an ARC from a Jane Austen week contest (it was great! Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Mr. Darcy, Vampyre, etc!), and I FINALLY got around to reading and reviewing it, and boy am I happy I did!
The blurb: " It begins one day in sophomore English class, just as Ellie Barnett's teacher is assigning Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice." From nowhere comes a quiet "tsk" of displeasure. The target: Sam Blaine, the cute bad boy who's teasing Ellie mercilessly, just as he has since kindergarten. Entirely unbidden, as Jane might say, the author's ghost has taken up residence in Ellie's mind, and seems determined to stay there.
Jane's wise and witty advice guides Elli through the trauma of adolescence and beyond, serving as the voice she trusts, usually, more than her own. Years and boyfriends come and go, but Jane's counsel is constant, and on the subject of Sam, quite insistent. STAY AWAY, Jane demands. He is your Mr. Wickham.
Still, everyone has something to learn about love -- perhaps even Jane herself. And lately, the voice in Ellie's head is being downed out by another, urging her to look beyond all she thought she knew and seek out her very own, very unexpected happy ending... "
Ooooh, sounds good right? Honestly, when I first got the book, I thought it was a Young Adult book, I don't know why. But really, not at all. Yes, you do get snippets of when she was in High school, but she's an adult for most of the book. In fact, I got the sense that until the last few chapters of the book, she was in her thirties, and just retelling this story for my benefit. Marilyn Brant did a wonderful job with this story, and it kind of makes me want to have Jane Austen in my head, guiding me through life, as a constant companion. Brant weaves (yes, weaves is the best description) a beautiful tale of Ellie's life from High School to her thirties. I loved the ending, I gotta say, it makes me giddy with happiness. And I really connected with Ellie. I've had some... trials in the love department, as well as seen others get married and find happiness, even have children, all while feeling a little lost and alone. You can really watch Ellie grow up, mature, and find herself. And that's another thing I love about the book, that she does manage to mature on her own, without the need of a man being there and guiding her.
I give "According to Jane" by Marilyn Brant a FIVE out of FIVE stars. I loved it. I'm recommending it to everyone, really. Heck, if I could give it a higher score, I would, but I don't want to get into weird fractions, or impossible numbers. I really do hope you all read and enjoy this. As I'm sure you gathered, it's not really paranormal-y, except the fact that Jane Austen's ghost is present. And I wouldn't necessarily call it romance-y either.. more.. Fiction, or maybe chick-lit. Really good chick-lit.
Happy reading, and check out "According to Jane!"
~ Morning Glow
Photo courtesy of Amazon.com
Copy was won in a contest, review was not done in exchange for book.