The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen
by Collins Hemingway
by Collins Hemingway
Publication Date: August 8th 2016
eBook & Paperback; 332 Pages
The Book Junkie Reads . . . Review of . . . THE MARRIAGE OF MISS JANE AUSTEN (Vol II) . . . I fell in love. I felt excited. I was transported. The writing was fantastic. The development of the characters was excellent. The missing pieces of Miss Jane Austen's life was like a piece of realism. There was the culture and the scene setting of the 19th century that made you feel like you were right there as it all took place. I loved this world created for Miss Jane Austen. I loved that she found a love that was hers and a family to call her own. There was a whole world for her to have adventures through. A life was built and the trials of being a mother, wife, and in-law was there. There was history mixed in adding to the realism of what her life could have been.
Jane Austen Lived a Quiet, Single Life-Or Did She?
Tradition holds that Jane Austen lived a proper, contemplative, unmarried life. But what if she wed a man as passionate and intelligent as she-and the marriage remained secret for 200 years?
The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen resolves the biggest mystery of Austen's life-the "lost years" of her twenties-of which historians know virtually nothing.
• Why the enduring rumors of a lost love or tragic affair?
• Why, afterward, did the vivacious Austen prematurely put on "the cap of middle age" and close off any thoughts of finding love?
• Why, after her death, did her beloved sister destroy her letters and journals?
The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen trilogy answers these questions through a riveting love affair based on the history of the times and the details of Austen's own life.
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Praise for The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen Series
"A skillful portrayal of an early nineteenth-century literary icon takes this historical romance on an imaginative journey of the soul. … The adventure of a true romantic partnership and all the excitement that the nineteenth century had to offer. … [The] novel invites you to linger, to savor, and to enjoy. … Makes for wonderful reading. … A Jane that lives and breathes on the page."—Claire Foster, Foreword Reviews, 4 stars
"Hemingway captures the energy of the times, while also writing with the irony and sly humor of Austen herself. … A strikingly real Jane Austen fully engaged in the turbulent times. … She is a living, breathing presence. … [He] displays a notable ability to recreate time and place. … A lively, compelling read, [a] sobering but moving conclusion." —Blueink Starred Review
"An enjoyable novel in an imaginative, well-researched series. … A well-researched work of historical fiction … [with] sweet moments and intriguing historical insights. … An incredibly moving portrait of a woman facing loss and love." —Kirkus Reviews
It was the day after the original news of Trafalgar, as they began the tense wait to hear of their brother’s fate, before Jane and Cassandra were settled enough to begin again their discussion of what Jane’s husband had started to call the “convocation.”
After the maid had left their tea things and departed, Jane offered a simple confession about her adjustment to the role of mistress of Hants House, the largest estate in Hampshire.
“At first I resisted the need to ring for someone. I felt I ought to prepare refreshments myself, as I have done all of my life. That desire faded rapidly. How quickly one falls into the deadly sin of sloth. One finds oneself enjoying the little luxuries.”
“The larger luxuries, too, I should think,” said Cassandra, casting an eye about the room like an agent canvassing an estate for an asset sale. Before her were:
—Period cabinets holding patterned china and antique clocks—ornate sofas and tables, and fragile desks meant to be admired rather than used—the chandelier that hung within concentric rows of gold designs against a white ceiling and the cherubim that looked down beatifically from each corner of the ceiling—the blue-green wallpaper embossed with darker floral designs, framed with wood panels of a complementary color, something between gold and cream—the thick rose-colored rug, the border of which matched the walls.
The only object that did not exude splendor was Jane’s own portable mahogany writing desk, a gift from her father years before, which was relegated to a deep corner of the room as if being isolated for misbehavior.
“The only way I can sit here comfortably is to pretend that I am in a museum,” Jane said.
“You are running the museum now.”
“Which is precisely why I need you.”
Cassandra had arrived the day before, after only a short time in Bath with her mother following an autumn at the seaside in Worthing. The family expected to remain in Bath, where they had moved to smaller quarters in the spring, for at least the next several months. Though Jane’s marriage made possible a move to more comfortable accommodations—including Hants itself, at the invitation of her husband—the cost of breaking the lease was sizable and Gay Street was gay enough with one less woman in the household. There was also her mother’s desire to keep sufficient distance so that Jane and Ashton could “find each other.”
She and Ashton had largely been at home since the end of their bridal tour, which had included travel along picturesque stations in the Lake Country, a stay in London, and finally a rendezvous with her family on the coast in Worthing. She and her new husband had exhausted themselves with theater and meandering country walks, when they were not exhausting themselves with conjugal experimentation. Since their return, they had slipped back to London to take advantage of the anonymity of the town, where they could practice certain things with more abandon than was possible in their commodious but well-staffed home.
After all the years as a single woman in which it was difficult to find even a few minutes of unchaperoned time with a man, she was amazed at the opportunities available in a large city to a sufficiently motivated married couple in which to indulge the most personal of yearnings. It became a point of pride that they availed themselves of every room of their suites and found inventive ways to test the integrity of every piece of architecture. And she would never again contemplate a private theater box in quite the same way.
“Should I speak up?” Cassandra said. “I asked how you are managing with the new household.”
Jane was certain that her face turned the same rosy hue as the rug. Cassandra had sensed not only her distraction but, judging from her sly smile, the cause of it. A last thought struck Jane before she spoke: Was it scandalous that in these early months they had done the things they had done—where and how they had done them—or was it scandalous that what they had done seemed perfectly natural, indeed necessary, to do?
Whether his subject is literature, history, or science, Collins Hemingway has a passion for the art of creative investigation. For him, the most compelling fiction deeply explores the heart and soul of its characters, while also engaging them in the complex and often dangerous world in which they have a stake. He wants to explore all that goes into people's lives and everything that makes tThe hem complete though fallible human beings. His fiction is shaped by the language of the heart and an abiding regard for courage in the face of adversity. As a nonfiction book author, Hemingway has worked alongside some of the world's thought leaders on topics as diverse as corporate culture and ethics; the Internet and mobile technology; the ins and outs of the retail trade; and the cognitive potential of the brain. Best known for the #1 best-selling book on business and technology, Business @ the Speed of Thought, which he coauthored with Bill Gates, he has earned a reputation for tackling challenging subjects with clarity and insight, writing for the nontechnical but intelligent reader. Hemingway has published shorter nonfiction on topics including computer technology, medicine, and aviation, and he has written award-winning journalism. Published books include The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen trilogy, Business @ the Speed of Thought, with Bill Gates, Built for Growth, with Arthur Rubinfeld, What Happy Companies Know, with Dan Baker and Cathy Greenberg, Maximum Brainpower, with Shlomo Breznitz, and The Fifth Wave, with Robert Marcus. Hemingway lives in Bend, Oregon, with his wife, Wendy. Together they have three adult sons and three granddaughters. He supports the Oregon Community Foundation and other civic organizations engaged in conservation and social services in Central Oregon.
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