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The Jane Austen Book Club: A Novel by Karen…

The Jane Austen Book Club: A Novel (original 2004; edition 2005)

by Karen Joy Fowler

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6,0891871,325 (2.97)299
Six people meet once a month to discuss Jane Austen's novels. Over the six months they meet marriages are tested, affairs begin, unsuitable arrangements become suitable, and under the guiding eye of Jane Austen, some of them even fall in love.
Title:The Jane Austen Book Club: A Novel
Authors:Karen Joy Fowler
Info:Plume (2005), Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Your library

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


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» See also 299 mentions

English (180)  German (2)  Danish (1)  Swedish (1)  French (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (186)
Showing 1-5 of 180 (next | show all)
Had looked forward to this and was a bit disappointed. I dont know whether it was because I was reading it in fits and starts, or whether because I had read "Angry Housewives eating Bon Bons" and was expecting something similar.
  nordie | Apr 18, 2022 |
I am amused. It was a light, enjoyable read. ( )
  jennybeast | Apr 14, 2022 |
I didn't like the characters, and found it really hard to get in to the story. I persevered, but I certainly wouldn't say it was fun. ( )
  fred_mouse | Dec 10, 2021 |
A treat. An appreciation of the six Austen novels told at least partly in the first person plural of a northern California book group. I admired that trick. I didn't enjoy all the book group character episodes equally but then I didn't enjoy the Austen novels equally either. I appreciated the references to the dog show world and the science fiction convention world. It made me want to go to some of their meetings to discuss the books. It ends with a collection of positive and negative comments about Austen's writing, starting from shortly after publication to the present day. ( )
  Je9 | Aug 10, 2021 |
group meets to read JA as changes occur in their own lives
  ritaer | Jul 11, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 180 (next | show all)
The real problem, though, is that the book club remains a convenience for gathering the novel's capsule stories. Fowler does not contrive any pleasing symmetries between her stories and Austen's, and the characters' discussions of Austen's novels are thin and uninteresting. They manage little more than "I think Catherine Moreland's a charming character", versus "She's very, very silly. Implausibly gullible." Fowler may have faith in Austen, but she does not trust her characters to make you interested in their particular readings. And she is certainly not prepared to make these characters as foolish or parti pris as some of the readers whose judgments Austen so mercilessly recorded.
added by KayCliff | editThe Guardian, John Mulland (Oct 30, 2004)
If, as a writer, you are going to take on Jane Austen - a novelist whose art, as Thornton Wilder put it, is so consummate that its secret is hidden, impossible wholly to illuminate - you had better make damn sure you are up to the job.
added by Nevov | editThe Observer, Rachel Cooke (Oct 10, 2004)

» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Karen Joy Fowlerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Cardeñoso, ConchaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Doizelet, SylvieTraductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ingendaay, MarcusÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Loósz Vera,Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schraf, KimberlyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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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.
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.
Above Daniel's head, one leaf, and only one leaf, ticked about on the walnut tree. How exacting, how precise the 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 who enjoys the 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)
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Six people meet once a month to discuss Jane Austen's novels. Over the six months they meet marriages are tested, affairs begin, unsuitable arrangements become suitable, and under the guiding eye of Jane Austen, some of them even fall in love.

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Haiku summary
Jane Austen as a
Plot device, badly written
Drivel: not worth it.

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