In the novel The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen, Syrie James imagines the life of the famous author, of which very little is known. Jane meets and falls in love with a handsome man above her station, and years later writes this memoir to recount her story. In doing so, she is able to explain how a woman who was never married and had no known passionate romance could write enduring classics of love and devotion. Along the way, it chronicles the writing of several of her famous novels, including Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility.
While perhaps not destined to become a classic like the works it is based on, The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen was remarkably authentic and well researched. James has done a remarkable job in making her Jane feel and read like the writing of the real Jane Austen. Fans of Jane Austen, or good romantic books, will probably enjoy this novel. Some portions moved too slowly, and I was sometimes frustrated with the preoccupation with “trivial” things, such as polite society talk, family obligations, running a household, and personal status. However, I do understand that these were primary players in the lives of people, especially women, in Jane Austen’s time (as well as primary themes in her work). Overall, I was surprised at the quality of this book!
Thanks Kristine for this Book!