Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Lost in Austen

Think you’re too old to read The Choose Your Own Adventure Series Books but still longing for a book that lets you control the fate of the characters? Is your definition of a “page turner” a book you have to flip back and forth through as you make decisions about what to do next? Do you lie and say, “It’s for my son” when you ask the lady at the Information desk where they are (under Choose in Youth Fiction BTW). Well, be ashamed no more! Choose Your Own Adventure comes to adult fiction with Emma Campbell Webster’s Lost in Austen .
The premise is simple: You’re Elizabeth Bennet; caught between your longing for love and marriage and your desperate need of fortune, meandering through the worlds of Pemberley, London, and Hertfordshire. One misstep and it’s all over for you, your sisters, and your parents. The stakes are high, and so are the heels. So tighten that corset and get ready to dance a Boulanger!
This book is great fun whether you’re playing on your own or having a girls’ night and competing for financial and romantic success in 19th century England. Campbell-Webster’s scenarios are at once true to the original and tongue-in-cheek hilarious. So far, my Elizabeth Bennett has added “absolutely no appreciation of the picturesque”, “poorly timed liveliness” and “unfortunate penchant for penniless gentlemen” to her list of “failings”. I hope she may still marry well, in spite of my poor choices.
Interested in more fun with Austen? Read Jean Burnett’s The Bad Miss Bennet or Me and Mr. Darcy by Alexandra Potter, available at your local VBPL.

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