The Jane Austen Society is a debut novel by Natalie Jenner about an unlikely group of Jane Austen fans who come together after WWII to preserve Austen's works and the home she lived in the last years of her life in Chawton, Hampshire England.
If you are a fan of Jane Austen my guess is, you will enjoy this book. The characters share their love of Austen and her novels and the influence reading her books had on their lives. As someone who has only read one Jane Austen book, I did feel like I was missing something. There are plenty of references to Austen's characters and novels, and I think having more knowledge about her novels would have been helpful.
The writing and story have an Austen vibe in a more contemporary way, which of course makes sense. There are a lot of characters; in this case 8 main characters. This imitates Austen who has an abundance of characters in her novels and there is a couple of twists and a romance. I found the number of characters to be a lot for this type of story, but I did like that the society and the connections made were important for each character. I just found that I didn't really connect with them.
I loved the setting of Chawton and the cottage. I especially loved the descriptions of the libraries and all the books and I liked the premise of creating the society. The overall theme or message is a good one. The importance of reading and how books impact our lives.
Unfortunately,there were some parts I just found rather boring and flat. I had hoped to learn and understand the love of Austen through characters who were passionate about her novels and that didn't really happen for me.
Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for an advanced electronic copy for an honest review.
Bookworm Rating: 🐛🐛🐛