When Tim Bullamore, the publisher of Jane Austen’s Regency World Magazine requested an HD image of the cover of Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen, he said that Joc Bury had given the book a lovely review and they wanted a good quality image to go with it. I was expecting and would have been more than happy with a nice little blurb. Imagine my surprise and pleasure that it went beyond lovely, at least to me, I think it’s a wonderful review. Share in my delight!
In Sally Smith O’Rourke’s follow-up to The Man Who Loved Jane Austen, the time traveling Fitz Darcy meets a modern woman who succeeds in replacing Jane in his affections. Or does she?
Moving back and forth between early 19th century Hampshire and 21st century Virginia, by way of New York City, this offbeat love story is immediately engaging.
The contemporary heroine, New York artist Eliza Knight, is delighted when she picks up a pretty little antique mirrored vanity in a salesroom – and more than intrigued when she makes a mystifying discovery. Tucked between the mirror and its backing are a pair of letters that appear to have been written by Jane Austen, along with a business card that leads Eliza to Fitzwilliam Darcy, a southern gentleman, racehorse breeder and, impossible though it seems, the inspiration for Jane Austen’s ultimate romantic hero.
As romance develops between Eliza and Fitz, a literary mystery unfolds and a heinous literary crime is foiled – all building to a splendidly satisfying conclusion.
Time-travel romance has become a popular and successful sub-genre of historical romantic fiction, giving writers every opportunity to place their characters in situations that test their affections not only across barriers of class and education, but also across centuries. O’Rourke handles the ensuing conflicts with humour and sensitivity.
Her portrayal of the young stableboy transported from 19th century Chawton to a 21st century stud farm is delightfully handled – as is the relationship between Fitz and Jane herself.
She creates a world that defies cynicism and demands suspension of disbelief – even in this age of doubt and hyper-realism. Sheer escapism at its best.
Clever, charming and affectionate – is the real Mr. Darcy unmasked?
Another great review appeared in the on-line magazine InD’tale read it here.
See what other people are saying, too. People like Ann Channon, house manager at Jane Austen’s House Museum (where the book is on sale); Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric blog and contributor to Jane Austen’s Regency World Magazine; Erin Murdock of InD’tale Magazine; Naida, the Bookworm and Amie McCracken