Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Midnight in Austenland by Shannon Hale

When Charlotte Kinder treats herself to a two-week vacation at Austenland, she happily leaves behind her ex-husband and his delightful new wife, her ever-grateful children, and all the rest of her real life in America. She dons a bonnet and stays at a country manor house that provides an immersive Austen experience, complete with gentleman actors who cater to the guests' Austen fantasies.

Everyone at Pembrook Park is playing a role, but increasingly, Charlotte isn't sure where roles end and reality begins. And as the parlor games turn a little bit menacing, she finds she needs more than a good corset to keep herself safe. Is the brooding Mr. Mallery as sinister as he seems? What is Miss Gardenside's mysterious ailment? Was that an actual dead body in the secret attic room? And-perhaps of the most lasting importance-could the stirrings in Charlotte's heart be a sign of real-life love?

The follow-up to reader favorite Austenland provides the same perfectly plotted pleasures, with a feisty new heroine, plenty of fresh and frightening twists, and the possibility of a romance that might just go beyond the proper bounds of Austen's world. How could it not turn out right in the end?

First Line:
" No one who knew Charlotte Constance Kinder since her youth would suppose her born to be a heroine."

Mrs. Hale has done it again!
Romance, intrigue and corsets.
Charlotte Kinder needs to get away from her reality for a few days. Donning an Austen-ish gown, relenquishing her cell phone (and the connection with her children) and immersion herself in Austenland, Charlotte finds she braver and stronger than the woman she left behind.
What did she expect to find is a murder mystery. The dead body in the attic disappears. The car in the pond is explained away. And the food is bland. What's a girl to do? Solve the mystery of course! And possibly fall in love as well.

Shannon's humor & writing
Chapter headings

Too much heaving bossoms
Having to wait until almost the end for the love interest


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