#AtoZchallenge: “J” is for Jane Austen

When you major in English in college, it’s inevitable that you will be invited to tea with Elizabeth Bennett and Fitzwilliam Darcy.


Many English majors can boast that they have read Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion, Mansfield Park, Emma, and Northanger Abbey, before they have received that coveted degree in English literature.

I loved reading Jane Austen’s novels in college. And in high school for that matter. My favorite would have to be Mansfield Park, though Emma is a close second.

Mansfield Park

In graduate school, I even went so far as to take a seminar that required me to read all of Jane Austen’s novels, in addition to one of her lesser known works, Catharine and Other Writings.

My shelves are also littered with Jane Austen biographies and Jane Austen-inspired texts.

Jane Austen Ruined My Life, for example.

jane austen ruined

I haven’t read any other books by this author, but she wrote this other one as well:


I don’t know anything about this book, but the cover is interesting:


I recently found a used copy of this one by P.D. James and am excited to read it:

Death Comes to Pemberley-1

The first time I studied in England, I took the train from London to Bath to explore some of Jane Austen country. It was there that the stories became even more alive—I could sit with my scones and clotted cream and my tea, and re-read my favorite passages from Austen’s books.

What are some of your experiences with Jane? Your favorite book by her? Are there any Jane Austen spinoffs that you think are a must-read for any Jane Austen fan?




14 thoughts on “#AtoZchallenge: “J” is for Jane Austen

  1. Yes, I love Jane Austen as well, and my interest is definitely piqued to see those ‘Mr Darcy broke my heart’-type books. I think I will look into them! I am fortunate enough to live in the UK – and I lived in Bath for many years. I felt a deeper connection with all of her books, when I recognised certain places as being “just round the corner from me”. Living in the UK, especially in this part of the country, history is just something you grow up with and becomes a part of your soul.

    BTW, you might enjoy Georgette Heyer novels as well…

    • You are fortunate indeed! 😀 I think that is a wonderful thing about being in the UK–you really get an appreciation for all the literary history. I will have to check out the Georgette Heyer novels–thank you for the recommendation!

  2. I love a Jane Austen as well! My favorites are P&P and Persuasion. I’m very intrigued to hear why Mansfield Park is your favorite – I’ve never heard anyone claim it as their favorite Austen before.
    I’ve read lots of Austen inspired books as well. I haven’t read Rude Awakenings, but I read Confessions of a a Jane Austen Addict (Rude Awakenings is the sequel). The books are about a modern girl and a Regency era girl who switch places.
    Death Comes to Pemberley was a good mystery novel with all my favorite (and not-so-favorite P&P characters). If you like mysteries, try Stephanie Barron’s books:
    Also, it’s not a book, but I have to include Clueless as one of my favorite Austen inspired movies! 😀

    • I’m glad to hear someone has read one of the books I posted! It’s funny because I hadn’t heard of the Rude Awakenings book before I wrote this post. Thank you for the link to check out!

      In MP, I like the relationship between Fanny and Edward, and I also enjoy some of the other layers to explore, with Edward’s father’s involvement with the slave trade, etc. For some reason I enjoyed that one especially!
      Yes, Clueless is great! 🙂

  3. I have a weird broken Jane Austen gene. I was the weird English major who didn’t love her writing. Seriously – what is wrong with me. I really WANT to love it. I have tried multiple times. But I just can’t!

    • LOL. I have met a few other people who feel the same–this is bound to happen and at least you know your preferences! I know there are some who love the Brontes but don’t like Austen–or they like Austen but don’t like the Brontes…

  4. I love Jane Austen. P&P is definitely my favorite, but Sense and Sensibility is a close second. I haven’t read too many Austen inspired novels, but I really enjoyed The Lizzie Bennet Diaries series on Youtube. You if haven’t seen it, you should check it out.

    • Sense and Sensibility is wonderful too! Have you read a contemporary novel that is sort of a “Sense and Sensibility”–The Weissmans of Westport? I will have to check out the Lizzie Bennet Diaries series. 🙂

  5. How interesting that Mansfield Park is your favorite! It’s usually pooh-poohed. And Emma is vastly different. Iiinteresting! I love P&P, Northanger Abbey (Catherine Morland is the most “me” of all Austen’s heroines), and Emma.

    As far as adaptations, Rude Awakenings is on my shelf to read this year! I had a lot of giggles over Austenland (and Midnight in Austenland, the followup, was good but not great). I’m looking forward to reading Austentatious someday. And Definitely Not Mr. Darcy. I prefer spin-offs to re-makes.

  6. Hi–thanks for visiting my blog. You have an interesting blog as well! This post caught my eye because Jane Austen was the first topic of conversation between my husband and me. We met in Japan at a Robert Burns night, and soon found a topic of shared interest as we were both English majors–he in the UK and me in the U.S.

    Sadly, I read Death Comes to Pemberley and found it to be a huge disappointment!
    Here’s my review on my book blog: http://mariesbookgarden.blogspot.com/2012/10/death-comes-to-pemberley.html

    Thanks for stopping by http://www.marie-everydaymiracle.blogspot.com!

    • I will definitely check out your review on Death Comes to Pemberley. Thanks for sharing!
      That is so wonderful that Jane Austen was the topic of conversation between you and your husband–what a fantastic story! 😀

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