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The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy…
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The Jane Austen Book Club (original 2004; edition 2005)

by Karen Joy Fowler

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5,084174883 (2.95)254
Member:AddictedToMorphemes
Title:The Jane Austen Book Club
Authors:Karen Joy Fowler
Info:Plume (2005), Edition: 1St Edition, Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Your library, Read but unowned
Rating:**
Tags:Read, Read in 2012

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The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler (2004)

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» See also 254 mentions

English (165)  German (2)  Danish (1)  Swedish (1)  French (1)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (172)
Showing 1-5 of 165 (next | show all)
The writing is not good, the characters are weak, and the plot even weaker. Our book club really didn't care about any of the characters. We certainly didn't agree with the good reviews the book received. ( )
  BookConcierge | Feb 11, 2016 |
Six people meet monthly to discuss Jane Austen's novels. There's a fairly contented woman in her sixties, two long-standing friends in their 50s, a young French teacher, another young woman who is the daughter of one of the good friends, and a guy who really prefers science fiction.

The book has brief descriptions of the meetings, and a lot of flashbacks into the characters' pasts. I found it interesting, on the whole, but did not enjoy it as much as I had expected to. There really isn't much plot, and there isn't a whole lot of discussion of Austen either. I couldn't really relate to any of the characters who seemed flat - not even amusing like some of Austen's characters - and although I kept trying to like it, I think I must have missed the point.

Still, it made pleasant enough light reading.

There are brief details about Jane Austen's novels at the back of the book, and some fascinating glimpses into comments and quotations made by her family, friends and other readers.

Perhaps three and a half stars. ( )
  SueinCyprus | Jan 26, 2016 |
This book was okay. I might have enjoyed it more had I not seen the movie first, though the movie was surprisingly true to the book with only a few changes. ( )
  cjservis | Jan 18, 2016 |
Six enthusiastic Jane Austen fans, Jocelyn, Sylvia, Allegra, Griff, Bernadette and Prudie, meet monthly to discuss that month's Austen novel. More enthralling than their Jane discussions are the club members' backstories. Jocelyn and Sylvia have been best friends since they were pre-teens and Jocelyn barely raised an eyebrow when Sylvia began to date and eventually marry Jocelyn's boyfriend Daniel. Now Daniel and Sylvia have separated and both Jocelyn and Sylvia find they miss him. Allegra, Sylvia's daughter, has recently broken up with her girlfriend, an aspiring writer who stealthily took Allegra's personal anecdotes and wrote short stories about them. Griff, the only man in the group, grew up with 3 older sisters and is very comfortable around women but seems to butt heads with Jocelyn on occasion. Jocelyn herself has never married and enjoys her life as a dog breeder. Prudie grew up with one of the strangest mothers I have ever run across in fiction and as a result Prudie underestimates herself and her dreams feeling nothing will ever be as good as she hopes. Bernadette, in her late 60's and the oldest of the group, is probably my favorite. The much-married woman tells endless stories, none of which anyone ever can believe entirely, and lives her life completely the way she wants, society be damned.

On the whole this was a pleasant story and I enjoyed the characters and their backgrounds. I am not a "Janeite" so the discussions of Austen's novels left me tad confused as the book club dissected each and every male and female major and minor character. I did like the book club questions written by the 6 book club members at the end of the book.
( )
  Ellen_R | Jan 15, 2016 |
Five woman and one man gather to form a book club that reads only Jane Austen books. As they gather at each other's homes, we learn more about that person's (the person whose home it is) current life and background.

I really enjoyed this. It didn't sound like much from the description (still doesn't from mine!), but I really enjoyed it. I would probably have enjoyed the Austen discussions more if I'd read her books more times or remembered more about them (I tend to get them mixed up in my head – they really are similar!), but I really enjoyed the interactions among the book club members and learning about their lives. ( )
  LibraryCin | Jan 6, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 165 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (24 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Karen Joy Fowlerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Schraf, KimberlyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Seldom, very seldom, does complete truth belong to any human disclosure; seldom can it happen that something is not a little disguised, or a little mistaken. - Jane Austen, Emma.
Dedication
For Sean Patrick Jmes Tyrrell,
Missing and forever missed.
First words
We sat in a circle on Jocelyn's screened porch at dusk, drinking cold sun tea, surrounded by the smell of her twelve acres of fresh-mowed California grass.
Quotations
Above Daniel's head, one leaf, and only one leaf, ticked about on the walnut tree. How exacting, how precise tbe breeze! It smelled of the river, a green smell in a brown month. She took a deep breath. (p.243)
In general, librarians enjoyed special requests. A reference librarian is someone wbo enjoys tbe chase. When librarians read for pleasure, they often pick a good mystery. They tend to be cat people as well, for reasons more obscure. (p.213)
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Haiku summary
Jane Austen as a
Plot device, badly written
Drivel: not worth it.
(passion4reading)

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0452286530, Paperback)

In California’s central valley, five women and one man join to discuss Jane Austen’s novels. Over the six months they get together, marriages are tested, affairs begin,
unsuitable arrangements become suitable, and love happens. With her eye for the frailties of human behavior and her ear for the absurdities of social intercourse, Karen Joy
Fowler has never been wittier nor her characters more appealing. The result is a delicious dissection of modern relationships.

Dedicated Austenites will delight in unearthing the echoes of Austen that run through the novel, but most readers will simply enjoy the vision and voice that, despite two centuries of separation, unite two great writers of brilliant social comedy.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:23 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

As six Californians get together to form a book club to discuss the novels of Jane Austen, their lives are turned upside down by troubled marriages, illicit affairs, changing relationships, and love.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 10 descriptions

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