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Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict: A Novel

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Sort by: Showing all of 12 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted May 31, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Fans of Ms. Austen will enjoy the second switch as an early nineteenth century aristocratic transplant tries to make it in Los Angeles.

    Jane Mansfield dreamed of escaping the confines of the Regency era aristocracy. So when she hears strange noises and wonders why Barnes the Butler has not silenced the source, she is shocked because she went to bed in 1813 and now finds herself in some place she never heard of: Los Angeles, California. Besides the eerie red digits, she looks into a mirror but what she sees reflected is not her. Worse Jane finds her abode is a dumpy apartment instead of gardens and servants.

    She explores the tiny box of a home and realizes the "occupant" Courtney Stone, like her, is (or is that was or will be) a Jane Austen fan. So far that is the only connection Jane can find. Jane is a bit frightened and knows she is spoiled but likes the music, the in door lighting and plumbing, the variety of cold and icy food , the freedom of loose clothing and especially the container holding tiny actors portraying Pride and Prejudice. She is taken aback with her attraction to Courtney Stone's friend Wes and the woman's former fiancé Frank. The biggest stunner is sex does not mean compromise and marriage so with Austen's novel to assist her in making it in this weird L.A., Jane Mansfield tries to figure out how to fit in modern American society.

    This is the opposite direction of that of CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT, in which an Internet era Southern California woman went to Austen's Regency period. RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT is a fun tale of "survival". The reactions of Courtney's friends to Jane's behavior including her diction makes the tale fun to read starting when she arrogantly informs Wes that her name is Jane Mansfield and he retorts in disbelief referring to the acting legend. Fans of Ms. Austen will enjoy the second switch as an early nineteenth century aristocratic transplant tries to make it in Los Angeles.

    Harriet Klausner

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 9, 2009

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    I Also Recommend:

    A Cheeky Comedy with a Message

    In the parallel story to best selling Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, Jane Mansfield a gentleman's daughter from 1813 is mysteriously transported into the body of twenty-first century Los Angelean Courtney Stone. Jane awakens with a headache, but it will take more than aromatic vinegar to solve her problems. Where is she? Her surroundings are wholly unfamiliar to the usual comforts of her parent's palatial Manor house in Somerset. Is she dreaming? She remembers a tumble off her horse Belle, but nothing after that point. She looks in the mirror and the face reflected back is not her own. How can this be? A young man named Wes arrives who calls her Courtney. Is he a servant? Who is Courtney? Ladies arrive for a visit concerned by her odd behavior. Why is she acting like a character in a Jane Austen novel?

    Jane is indeed a stranger in a strange land. As her friends, or Courtney's friends Paula, Anna and Wes, help her navigate through the technology of cell phones, CD players, washing machines and other trappings of our modern life it becomes les taxing. She relishes her privacy and independence to do as she chooses, indulging in reading the four new (to her) novels by Jane Austen that she discovers on Courtney's bookshelf - one passion/addiction that she shares in common with her over the centuries. Between Jane Austen's keen insights and the fortune teller called "the lady", she might be able to make sense of this nonsensical world she has been thrown into.The lady tells her she has work to do to put Courtney's life in order. Jane only wants to return to her former life and Charles Edgeworth, the estranged beau she left behind.

    Seeing our modern world from Jane's nineteenth century eyes was quite revealing. I do not think that I will ever look at a television screen again without remembering her first reaction to the glass box with tiny people inside talking and dancing like characters from Pride and Prejudice! These quirky insights are what Rigler excels at, and her Regency era research and knowledge of Jane Austen plays out beautifully. We truly understand Jane's reactions and sympathize with her frustrations. Not only is Rude Awakenings a comedy of lifestyle comparisons across the centuries, it supplies a very interesting look at modern courtship and romance with a bit of genteel feminisms thrown in for good measure. Interestingly, what principals and standards that Jane learned in the nineteenth century, will straighten out Courtney's mixed up twenty-first century life at home, work and in her budding romance with Wes.

    Rude Awakenings is a cheeky comedy with a message. Like Jane Austen's novel Persuasion, it helps us to look at mistakes in our past, and reminds us that "time is fleeting, and few of us are fortunate enough to notice that there is always another chance at happiness." I enjoyed the humor, fondly remembering why I became a Jane Austen Addict in the first place.

    Laurel Ann, Austenprose

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 17, 2009

    A must-read intriguing comedy!!

    Laurie Viera Rigler has skillfully written an imaginative story portraying the humorous contrast in lifestyles between 19th and 21st century women. The tale begins as Jane Mansfield, a member of Regency England's aristocracy, awakens in the body of modern-day, Los Angeleno Courtney Stone. Finding herself in bewildering surroundings among mind-boggling modern conveniences, she goes from one comical situation to the next. Her experiences with such things as an alarm clock, tv and cell phone are simply hilarious. In spite of being confused and sometimes afraid, she begins to learn our present-day customs and gets excited by the many opportunities. A romance completes this thoroughly enjoyable story. Ms. Rigler is a brilliant storyteller who utterly captivated me from the very first page. Her descriptions of modern-day belongings with Jane's 19th century diction and vocabulary were laugh-out-loud funny. As delightful as this book was, it did impart plenty of timeless wisdom. We must learn to live in the moment, striving to move forward, rather than dwell in the past. Also, it's important to learn about ourselves and others before we jump to conclusions. I absolutely loved this creative, entertaining book and I highly recommend it!!
    This is the parallel story to "Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict", where Courtney Stone awakens in 19th century England in the body of Jane Mansfield!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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