Sunday, January 23, 2011

Jane and the Madness of Lord Byron by Stephanie Barron

I have signed up for the Smyrna Public Library's Winter Reading Program. I have to read 6 books in 6 weeks. I see some graphic novels on my horizon!

This is the 10th book in this Jane Austen mystery series. Unlike other series that attempt to continue some of Jane's works, this series takes Jane Austen and places her as sleuth; I think this is a good fit because Jane was, obviously from her works, an acute studier of human nature. These books are Jane's lost "journals" from her life. The author looks at Jane's letters (Dierdre LeFaye) and bases the books on real places, real people, and real dates in Jane's real existing letters; ingenious!
This book is the first to veer from that premise of historical (letters) fiction. This book takes Jane to Brighton with her brother Henry after the death of his wife, the Comtesse Eliza de Feudille. It is recorded that Jane spent two months with Henry in London after the death of his wife; this jaunt to Brighton is purely fictional.
While in Brighton, Jane meets George Gordon, Lord Byron, who was really in Brighton at the time writing his poem The Giaour about the drowning of a young girl ( Barron uses this poem as the jumping off point of this mystery.
Like all books in this series, these "journals" are written in the style of Jane Austen. I just really enjoy them and recommend them to fans of Jane. This, the 10th, does not disappoint!

If you are interested in reading this series, then you can join the "Being a Jane Austen Mystery Reading Challenge 2011 at

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