By Cindy Jones
From the publisher: Lily has squeezed herself into undersized relationships all her life, hoping one might grow as large as those found in the Jane Austen novels she loves. But lately her world is running out of places for her to fit. So when her bookish friend invites her to spend the summer at a Jane Austen literary festival in
, she jumps at the chance to reinvent herself. England
There, among the rich, promising world of Mansfield Park reenactments, Lily finds people whose longing to live in a novel equals her own. But real-life problems have a way of following you wherever you go, and Lily's accompany her to
. Unless she can change her ways, she could face the fate of so many of Miss Austen's characters, destined to repeat the same. England
I found My Jane Austen Summer patiently waiting for me on the front display table at my neighborhood Borders. Yes, I am happy to say that we still have a neighborhood Borders and I promptly grabbed it from the table and began reading it while standing in line to pay. See there is something to be said for a "brick and mortar" store as I would never have found this gem online. I went in for a magazine and came out with this wonderful book! I forgot to get the magazine.
I thought author Cindy Jones developed a very likable and believable lead character in Lily Berry. Poor Lily has been dumped by her ex and has sadly resorted to stalking him around Dallas just to be near him, really. I've never felt so badly for a character so quickly, as I did Lily. Then she gets fired and as if her live wasn't more miserable, she finds out that her recently widowed father is about to marry the woman he's been having an affair with, behind her mother's back. With her mother now deceased and her dad moving the chippie in, Lily needs to get away...now.
When a chance to spend the summer working at an Austen festival in the UK comes her way, Lily is outta there and winging it across the pond. Once there, she finds that her "job" is not as secure as she had hoped and that she's not really wanted. Jones writes a heroine that I often wanted to shake, but always found her engaging and endearing!
I really liked My Jane Austen Summer and Lily Berry! This is Cindy Jones' first book and it's a great fun read, perfect for this time of year. Pour up some iced tea or a margarita and grab a shady spot and lose yourself in a different Mansfield Park.
I hope Ms. Jones plans on writing a follow up for Lily, as I'd love to see what's up next for her..and what Austen background will be visited by Lily the next time!
4 out of 5 stars.
This book is from my own overflowing bookshelves, paid for with my own meager pennies.