I think I love Shannon Hale.

I'll admit it, I was a bit skeptical. I mean I loved Shannon Hale's young adult fiction but that didn't necessarily mean that her writing would translate well to contemporary fiction...especially chick-lit. Especially Austen inspired chick-lit. I mean, it was called Austenland. It's kind of a high order isn't it?

I liked it. A lot.

Jane is well...Jane is a lot of people I know. Professionally successful, independent, her own woman. But when it comes to men? Pfft. Settling for less because she's convinced the fantasy doesn't exist, at least not for her. Her secret is her Pride and Prejudice DVDS (1995 with Colin Firth of course) which she keeps hidden out of sight. (Seriously??? Do women really hide them??? Why on earth for?) Her great-aunt discovers them and in her will leaves Jane a wee little inheritance of 3 weeks at Pembrooke Park - aka Austenland. She'll spend three weeks in full Austen era gear, adhering to the social customs and rules of the time, all in the hope of either finding love or getting Mr. Darcy out of her system forever.

It could have not worked. It could have been a bad moved on Hale's part. But it worked. Wonderfully. I laughed out loud multiple times. Actually if your promise not to tell someone (because it's so very unladylike and un-Austen) - I guffawed.

While you don't have to be an Austen fan to enjoy this it does add more depth to it. Austen characters and plots are frequently referenced.

I heartily recommend it.

Man, I'm loving being on vacation right now. ;)

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