When I finished reading Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict I really hoped there would be a sequel. I’m pleased to report that author Laurie Viera Rigler wrote the sequel – really more of a parallel story – and it will be in bookstores on June 25, 2009. If you haven’t read the first book I would recommend it as I found I could jump right into the sequel without needing to ask any questions. But, if for some reason you can’t do that, let me just say that “Confessions of a JAA” is the story of a 21st century young woman (Courtney Stone) who wakes up in the body of a young woman (Jane Mansfield) in Regency England and must live her life. Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict is the story of Jane Mansfield waking up in 21st century Los Angeles in the body of Courtney Stone. Confused yet? Just sit back, relax, and enjoy the fun adventures of Courtney and then Jane in both books. Now on to my thoughts about the most recent. . .Imagine waking up in a future century where you don’t understand the lexicon much less the devices, etc. of this new life you’re living. That’s what Jane Mansfield grapples with as well as not knowing her friends (even though they claim to know her). Television, telephones, computers, cars, refrigerators, iPods – these are just some of the things Jane doesn’t have a clue about how to use. Not only that but Jane (in her former life) is used to having servants do most things for her and now (in this new life) she must figure out everything. And that includes doing her own laundry:It is but a couple of hours later that I deposit a pile of washing upon the bed’s soft red coverlet. My satisfaction in having learnt how to use the washing machine has an alloy, for despite my certainty of having followed every instruction on the lid of the device, I am left with a miniature version of a white dress that I now hold in my hands. I suppose I might pull apart the dress and make a set of handkerchiefs. Or a fichu. If, that is, I could but locate a needle and thread. I have seen neither a workbag nor a needle-case. Not even a thimble in this house.It is only upon folding the pile of garments that I discover they, too, come with instructions. It appears that each garment requires a different washing temperature and method of drying. I do hope there are a greater number of literate people in this time than there were in mine. Otherwise a great many people will find themselves with doll’s clothing.
I enjoyed seeing Jane become immersed in Courtney’s world. Laurie Viera Rigler had me laughing much of the time and cheering for Jane as she found her way in her new surroundings and relationships. There is so much more to the book but I think you’ll enjoy discovering it on your own without advance notice from me. I know I’ll be reading both books again. If you’re looking to be entertained by something a little different you can’t go wrong with Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict.My thanks to Dutton for the review copy.Please visit Jane Austen Addict for more information.
After her boss in a high-powered Washington public relations firm is caught in a political scandal, fledgling lobbyist Dempsey Jo Killebrew is left almost broke, unemployed, and homeless. Out of options, she reluctantly accepts her father’s offer to help refurbish Birdsong, the old family place he recently inherited in Guthrie, Georgia. All it will take, he tells her, is a little paint and some TLC to turn the fading Victorian mansion into a real-estate cash cow.
But, oh, is Dempsey in for a surprise when she arrives in Guthrie. “Bird Droppings” would more aptly describe the moldering Pepto Bismol–pink dump with duct-taped windows and a driveway full of junk. There’s also a murderously grumpy old lady, one of Dempsey’s distant relations, who has claimed squatter’s rights and isn’t moving out. Ever.
Furthermore, everyone in Guthrie seems to know Dempsey’s business, from a smooth-talking real-estate agent to a cute lawyer who owns the local newspaper. It wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for the pesky FBI agents who show up on Dempsey’s doorstep, hoping to pry information about her ex-boss from her.
All Dempsey can do is roll up her sleeves and get to work. And before long, what started as a job of necessity somehow becomes a labor of love and, ultimately, a journey that takes her to a place she never expected—back home again.
My thoughts:I like a book that has me laughing as I turn the last page. The Fixer Upper is smart, funny, and pretty much charmed my socks off. The political scandal is secondary to what I think is the main story – no, not the house rehab – I think its more about Dempsey fixing her life. Or at least figuring out what she wants to do with her life instead of trying to measure up to her parents’ expectations. In the process she meets some wonderful people in Guthrie who show her some of what life has to offer. If you’re looking for a good book to read this summer, you can’t go wrong with The Fixer Upper. It will be in bookstores on June 23.
Thanks to Kyle at HarperCollins for the review copy.
HarperCollins made available 5 copies of The Fixer Upper.
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