The Jane Austen Society tells us a tale of a group of people with little in common, expect their love for Jane Austen, coming together not only to honour the novelist, but also to help each other in difficult moments of their lives.
The plot takes place in Chawton shortly after WWII, and we are slowly introduced to all characters who will later in the story form the Jane Austen Society. Each of these characters has their own demons to face and even if they’ve all had different lives, and struggle with different difficulties, they are all broken in a way. They will find reason to hope for a better future in Jane Austen’s writings at first, and each other at a later stage, and it is was their improbable friendship, genuine concern and kindness towards each other that captivated me in this book.
It was hard to engage with the story during the initial chapters because we are introduced to many different characters, and some are more empathic than others. However, as the story progressed and they started to connect to each other creating one single plotline, I started to feel more involved, and at a certain point, I couldn’t stop listening to the audiobook because I wanted to see where the author would take these characters and where the Knight legacy would end up.
I’ve come to appreciate each one of the people we are introduced to, and I am glad to see the author took care of each one of them, allowing them to find redemption, in some cases, peace of mind in others, or simply move on to a better life. They start the story in a dark place, but their friendship and kindness will allow them to heal their wounds and find happiness.
The Jane Austen Society is a beautiful story that slowly demonstrates to the reader all the sadness in the world can be overcome and that it is never late to find people with whom we can be ourselves, share our interests and grow as human beings.
The love the main characters showed towards Jane Austen and her legacy was something I truly enjoyed, and seeing them analyse and discuss Austen’s works (mainly Emma and Pride and Prejudice) was clearly a plus, but what I loved the most about this book was the friendship that came out of that love for Austen. I disagreed with a certain decision they took as a group, but was impressed with the goodness and concern they showed towards one of their own.
I believe Austen fans will appreciate this book because of all the Austen references and the appreciation these characters have for the author, but I consider this an interesting book even for those who are not familiar with Austen because the story goes beyond her.
The Jane Austen Society is a very well written book that will touch people’s hearts, and I recommend it to my readers.
Elizabeth Bennet’s Level
There are good narrators, there are extraordinary narrators and then there is Richard Armitage!
Everytime I listen to an audiobook narrated by Richard Armitage I am astonished with his talent, and The Jane Austen Society was no exception. Each character is perfectly distinguishable either by the tone of voice he employs, the manner of speech, the accent, the breathing, etc. The narrative read with his own voice is heavenly but the care he takes with each character is definitely something that puts him in a completely different scale. He is without a doubt my favourite narrator, and words do not make justice to his talent. I highly recommend the audiobook version of The Jane Austen Society which is perfectly delivered by Armitage. Plus, the at the end of the audiobook we are rewarded with an interview that the author of The Jane Austen Project made to Natalie Jenner and that was really interesting to listen to.
You can find The Jane Austen Society at:
and on Audible.com
Natalie Jenner is the debut author of THE JANE AUSTEN SOCIETY, a fictional telling of the start of the society in the 1940s in the village of Chawton, where Austen wrote or revised her major works. Born in England and raised in Canada, Natalie graduated from the University of Toronto with degrees in English Literature and Law and has worked for decades in the legal industry. She recently founded the independent bookstore Archetype Books in Oakville, Ontario, where she lives with her family and two rescue dogs.
The Blog Tour is still in the beginning so you still have plenty of stops to check out if you want to know more about this book 🙂
May 25 Jane Austen’s World
May 26 Frolic Media
May 26 A Bookish Affair
May 26 Courtney Reads Romance
May 26 Margie’s Must Reads
May 26 The Reading Frenzy
May 27 Gwendalyn’s Books
May 28 Getting Your Read On
May 28 Living Read Girl
May 28 The Lit Bitch
May 29 History Lizzie
May 29 Silver Petticoat Reviews
May 30 Historical Fiction Reader
May 31 Jane Austen in Vermont
June 01 From Pemberley to Milton
June 01 My Jane Austen Book Club
June 01 AustenBlog
June 02 Lu’s Reviews
June 02 The Green Mockingbird
June 03 Relz Reviews
June 03 Impressions in Ink
June 04 The Caffeinated Bibliophile
June 04 Life of Literature
June 04 Laura’s Reviews
June 05 Reading Ladies Book Club
June 05 Bookish Rantings
June 06 From the TBR Pile
June 07 Rachel Dodge
June 07 An Historian About Town
June 08 Bringing up Books
June 08 Austenesque Reviews
June 09 Captivated Reading
June 09 Savvy Verse and Witt
June 10 Lady with a Quill
June 10 Drunk Austen
June 11 Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell
June 11 Inkwell Inspirations
June 12 Nurse Bookie
June 12 A Bookish Way of Life
June 13 Calico Critic
June 14 Jane Austen’s World
June 15 Stuck in a Book
June 15 Storybook Reviews
June 15 Confessions of a Book Addict
June 16 Literary Quicksand
June 16 Becky on Books
June 17 The Reading Frenzy
June 17 Anita Loves Books
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June 18 The Write Review
June 19 Diary of Eccentric
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June 21 Short Books & Scribes
June 22 Reading the Past
June 22 Babblings of a Bookworm
June 23 My Vices and Weaknesses
June 23 The Book Diva Reads
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June 25 Bookfoolery
June 26 Lit and Life
June 26 Vesper’s Place
June 27 Foxes and Fairy Tales
June 28 Probably at the Library
June 28 Scuffed Slippers Wormy Books
June 29 The Anglophile Channel
June 29 So Little Time…
June 30 BookNAround