instead of an orginal blog post for today I'm just going to copy what I wrote for yesterday for the JASNA_CNJ blog:
Jane Austen Society of North America-- Central New Jersey Chapter: Read Jane...Now What? - Book Recomendations:
The Apothecary's Daughter by Julie Klassen
Lilly Haswell remembers everything--whether she wants to, or not...
As Lilly toils in her father's apothecary, preparing herbs and remedies by rote, she is haunted by memories of her mother's disappearance. Villagers whisper the tale, but her father refuses to discuss it. All the while, she dreams of the world beyond--of travel and adventure and romance.
When a relative offers to host her in London, Lilly discovers the pleasures and pitfalls of fashionable society and suitors, as well as clues about her mother. But will Lilly find what she is searching for--the truth of the past and a love for the future?
Blending romance, family drama, and fascinating historical detail, The Apothecary's Daughter is a novel to savor and share. (from goodreads.com)
I really enjoyed this book. The characters were great and likeable and I became highly invested in Lilly's story. Lily struggles between two words and trying to decided what she wants out of life. There is the life she thinks she wants and the life she really wants. I had an idea which suitor she would end up with but at different times I kept routing for a different one, I think even Lilly didn't know who she really wanted any more than she knew which life she wanted.
His Good Opinion: A Mr. Darcy Novel by Nancy Kelley
Mr. Darcy Speaks from the Heart:
Pride and Prejudice from his Point of View
Though tired of Society's manipulations, Darcy never thought to be enchanted by a country maiden. Yet on a visit to rural Hertfordshire, Elizabeth Bennet captivates him. Lovely and vivacious, she is everything he is not, and everything he longs to have.
Unfortunately, her connections put her decidedly beneath him, and the improprieties he observes in her family do not win his favor. Putting her firmly out of his mind, Darcy returns to London, but Elizabeth is not so easily forgotten.
When chance throws them together, Darcy can no longer deny his love, but Elizabeth, put off by his manners, refuses him. To change her mind, he must set aside his proud ways and learn how to please a woman worthy of being pleased. It takes a serious incident for his true character to shine, and for Elizabeth to learn just how valuable is…
His Good Opinion (from amazon.com)
I'm picky about my Jane Austen sequels and retellings. I've only really liked a few and this one I really liked. Nancy does a great job of getting inside Darcy's head. We are treated to new scenes that take place parallel to those we already know and these help us get a better understanding of Darcy's behavior, mood, and his "Darcyness".
Nachtstürm Castle: A Gothic Austen Novel by Emily C.A. Snyder
Catherine Tilney had settled in for a quiet, respectable, distinctly non-Gothic English life in the countryside with her husband, the Reverend Henry Tilney. Unfortunately, a quiet, respectable, distinctly non-Gothic life had not settled itself for her. An original sequel to Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey, Nachtstürm Castle whisks the reader and its heroine away to the border countries in the Austrian Alps, where adventure, mistaken identities, lost heirs, and terrifying butlers lurk. (from goodreads)
Poor Northanger Abbey is one of the lesser loved Jane works, I personally love it and try to push people to read it. Emily does a great job of continuing the story of Catherine and Henry. What better vacation can Catherine hope for than to find herself in the middle of a Gothic mystery and that's just where they find themselves. Nachtstürm Castle has mysterious tenets, a creepy care taker, secret passageways and a family mystery that just needs to be solved.