Booking Mama

Thursday, July 30, 2009
Review: Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict

Last year, I read CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT by Laurie Viera Rigler. I thought it was just a great book — you can read my review here. I knew at the time that Ms. Rigler was already working on a sequel, and I’ve been anxiously awaiting the book’s release for months. I am so excited to say that RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT is now available and it’s just a good, if not better, than the first book (in my humble opinion!)

I guess RUDE AWAKENINGS is technically a sequel, but it is really more like a story that occurs simultaneously — now I’ve totally confused you because CONFESSIONS took place in 19th century England while RUDE AWAKENINGS takes place in modern day Los Angeles. Suffice it to say that there is some time travel involved. One thing that I liked about Ms. Rigler’s latest novel is that the stories actually came together for me. CONFESSIONS had an ending that was purposely left open for the reader’s interpretation. When I read RUDE AWAKENINGS, I felt as if some things were clarified. After reading both books, I certainly think they can stand alone; but I highly recommend reading both books. And if you can read them in order, all the better. I loved all the little references in RUDE AWAKENINGS about things that occurred in CONFESSIONS; and I just felt like I had a little bit of insider information by reading both of them.

While I most definitely enjoyed CONFESSIONS, I think one of the reasons that I liked RUDE AWAKENINGS more was because it took place in Los Angeles in the present. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing how Jane saw our modern times with her nineteenth-century eyes. There were so many very funny scenes where Jane tried to figure out computers, cell phones, dance clubs, automobiles, etc. I loved all of her dealings with our modern lifestyles, and I found a few of her comments to be rather insightful — they actually made me assess some of what I take for granted.

RUDE AWAKENINGS is a light, fun read; however, this book does delve into some serious issues — I wasn’t really expecting to think quite so much when I picked up this novel (I mean that in an entirely good way.) I loved Jane/Courtney and everything she symbolized about young women in today’s society. When Jane “arrives” in present day, she is suddenly faced with everything she had hoped for back in England — her own house, her own job, and even her independence — but her new life wasn’t without complications. Even though Jane’s adjustment was especially drastic (she was living as another woman in the future), she still faced many of the exact same issues that women do when they leave home and begin life on their own. In addition, I thought Jane/Courtney’s relationship woes were similar to many women’s relationship problems with men. Her ability to work through these issues and make intelligent decisions that were best for her is a lesson that almost every young woman needs to hear.

I totally think RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT would make a wonderful book club pick. In fact if your group is feeling ambitious, why not pair both CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT with RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT; or read one of Ms. Rigler’s books in concert with an actual Jane Austen novel. There is a reading guide available to help facilitate your discussion, and Ms. Rigler is even available to phone in to your meeting to talk about her books.

Thanks to the author and publisher for sending me a copy of this novel.
Posted by Julie P. at 3:21 AM

Laurie Viera Rigler
Hardcover: 9780525950769
Paperback: 9780452296169

Jane awakens to strange surroundings, not the bed of her manor but a small room with iron bars on the window and not a servant in sight. Her voice is unfamiliar and her reflection shapely but not her own. A young man enters from the adjoining room, and Jane finds that he has mistaken her for a woman named Courtney. She has never laid eyes on the stranger, Wes, before, and he tells her that she hit her head at the bottom of a swimming pool. Nursing a headache but certain that Wes is mistaken, Jane knows she is not this Courtney who has injured herself and forgotten her past, but is Miss Jane Mansfield. Her efforts to convince Wes concern him, so he calls her two closest friends, Anna and Paula, who of course Jane has never met.

Upon arriving, Anna and Paula quickly become as alarmed as Wes has been. All three insist on taking her to a doctor, and clothe her in garments that are shocking to Jane in their impropriety. They then push her inside the body of a strange carriage called a “car,” which begins the surreal, illuminating ride that Jane’s dream has been. She is seen by a physician who drugs her with some unpleasant pill, and when she awakes from an indistinct sleep, her situation is unchanged. Jane’s more practical side kicks in gear, and she calms herself enough to become determined to make the best of the situation, or at least try to keep Courtney’s friends from thinking she’s gone mad.

Jane herself is much like the heroines of her favorite Jane Austen novels: charming, humble, kind and, yes, very proper when it’s called for. She never, ever forgets what society expects of her. So it’s disturbing for her to learn that Courtney was about to be wed to a questionable man named Frank but had called off the wedding just before hitting her head, apparently because Frank is a cheat. On actually seeing Frank, however, Jane is surprised to find that he still has some kind of hold on her, or at least on Courtney’s body, because she can’t seem to keep her eyes off him. She wonders immediately if Courtney has been spoiled in her courtship with this man. Even more disconcerting and exciting, Jane discovers that Wes is more completely alluring than Frank is. Wes saves the day when Courtney is in a pickle financially and helps Jane learn the ropes of using a computer and a phone, even finding a new job for her. He’s handsome, kind, wealthy and an eligible bachelor.

On an outing with Frank and Wes, Jane runs into an old acquaintance of Courtney’s, an Indian barmaid named Deepa. Jane instantly trusts Deepa and dares tell her who she really is within the impostor, nervously asking Deepa if she believes in reincarnation. Deepa is quiet yet seems convinced and leads Jane down the hall in the bar to the door of a psychic, an oddly familiar woman who resembles a fortuneteller Jane recently met at a fair in England. This strange lady warns her of the danger in judging others, particularly Courtney and her life. Her words are prophetic:

“Most of us walk through our daily lives as if we were asleep. We regard not what is before our eyes. We see not how we construct fantasies of our own and others’ intentions without having the smallest knowledge of what we, or they, are truly about. We are all imaginists, storytellers if you will, and the pity is that none of us recognizes his sorry state.”

The fortuneteller asks Jane to return only when she understands the meaning of those words and hints that understanding will come only by seeing in the present through Courtney’s eyes.

So, as you might have guessed, there are revelations to behold and implications to consider in RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT. These revelations are Jane Mansfield’s awakenings, and fittingly, they echo frequent themes of Jane Austen’s literature: that imagination often takes the form of prejudice, that graciousness and respect come with their own rewards. But Laurie Viera Rigler’s stories aren’t meant to be taken all that seriously, and they are definitely not meant to be reproductions of Austen’s novels (although they are always respectful of them.) CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT and RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT are clever parodies of the customs of 19th-century English socialites and modern-day Americans, and both books are absolutely uproariously funny. I laughed from the first page to the last, and I can imagine a great many other die-hard Jane Austen fans will do the same.

— Reviewed by Melanie Smith


In Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict, Jane Mansfield who is from Regency England, wakes up in the body of Courtney Stone, current day in Los Angeles. At first Jane thinks she is dreaming, and wills herself to wake up.
Courtney’s friends explain to Jane that she hit her head pretty hard while in a swimming pool and that her ‘confusion’ might just be a concussion. Her friends are also wondering why Courtney is now talking as if she just stepped out of a Jane Austen novel.
The last thing Jane remembers is riding her horse and bumping her head while taking a fall. While in Courtney’s apartment, she finds copies of Jane Austen books as well as movie version of the novels. She begins to read the books and watch the films.

I do not know how I come to be in this time, in this place, in this body. But I do know that any place where there are six novels by the author of Pride & Prejudice must be a very special sort of heaven.

Jane is in shock to see so many differences in society. Besides television, cell phones, internet, cars and radio, Jane is stunned to see ladies unchaperoned, working and exposing so much skin. As the story goes on, Jane is getting flashbacks of Courtney’s life. She realizes she has alot to figure out and wants to help Courtney set things straight. One thing Jane does find out is that both she and Courtney were unlucky in love at the time they switched bodies. With the help of her friend Deepa, Jane winds up going to a fortune teller who does seem to be other wordly and has some answers to Jane’s questions. As Jane is trying to adjust to current day L.A., she is also wondering how and if she can ever get back to her former life.

I had been eagerly awaiting this book. Having read and really enjoyed Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict and seeing what happened to Courtney while she lived in Jane’s body, I was very curious to see what happens with Jane while she inhabits Courtney’s body. Laurie does answer some of the questions, and she leaves the ending a bit open. I wonder will there be a third book?

If you’re in the mood for a fun, light read, pick up a copy of Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict, you won’t regret it! First of course, you have to read Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict . These books are the perfect read for Jane Austen fans. The way Laurie writes, you can tell she is a true lover of Austen’s work. I like how she refers to Jane Austen novels throughout both books.

Books and Bards

November 2, 2009

Book Review: What Would Jane Do? Prepare For a Rude Awakening

Rude Awakenings
of a Jane Austen Addict
by Laurie Viera Rigler

If Jane Austen were here today, would she recoil in horror at the immorality of the modern woman, or would she let out a great whoop whoop! for our freedom from the vise-like social mores that caused her heroines such pain and conflict?

I think it’s hard to say. On the one hand, her writing both satirizes and disparages many of the customs that proved so discriminatory against women of the gentry, such as property entailment, the inability to earn a living, and complete dependence upon men for their livelihood. I rather like to think of her as an independent and free-thinking woman of her time.

On the other hand, I do get the impression that propriety is something she took seriously, and that her version of women’s lib only stretched so far. I think she’d have a pretty hard time with bikinis and one-night stands.

Personally, I’m guessing she’d do a little bit of both (recoil and whoop whoop!). In fact, I’m guessing she’d react pretty much how Jane Mansfield reacts to waking up in the 21st century in Laurie Viera Rigler’s Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict.

In this breezy follow-up to Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, it is now Regency gentlewoman Jane’s eyes through which we see as she inhabits the body of modern L.A. thirtysomething Courtney Stone. After falling from her horse and receiving a nasty bump on her head, Jane awakens to a strange room where gadgets blink and beep at her and a strange box appears to be a window onto tiny actors acting out scenes from her favorite contemporary novel, Pride and Prejudice.

While Courtney is back in 19th-century England fighting with Jane’s oppressive mother and trying to catch a husband, Jane must navigate a world of mini-dresses, night clubs, speeding cars, mixed signals, crummy jobs, and pushy best friends. She’s as clueless about how to get back into her own body as she is about how to use a cell phone, and L.A. slows down for no one, which means she’s forced to plunge into another woman’s life and try not to make a muddle of it. As she adjusts to life in the fast lane, she begins to realize the two worlds are in some ways not quite as different as she thought.

Of the two books, I imagine this must have been by far the harder to write. Not only did the author have the task of describing the modern world through the eyes of a woman who doesn’t even have the lexicon to describe most of our daily conveniences, but she had to address Jane’s culture shock well enough to make it believable yet not so much that it gets in the way of little things like plot and character development.

In my opinion, she pulls it off fetchingly.

Laurie Viera Rigler’s strength as a writer is her ability to ply the first-person, stream-of-conscious narrative female voice. Her writing bubbles with energy and personality, and her characters draw me right in, making me want to braid their hair while we eat popcorn, watch Colin Firth movies, and become BFFs.

Of course, like any real-life BFF would, I did find myself getting a bit impatient with Jane’s incredulity and frustrated with her overly pushy friends. In some places the plot seemed to stall a bit, while in others it seemed to rush ahead without giving the main character room to breathe. However, the fact that the book engaged me enough to elicit such strong reactions speaks volumes.

I was a little disappointed in the ending. It’s hard to discuss why without giving anything away, but a few things left me confused, and Jane and Courtney didn’t end up quite where I wanted them to. What this book did do, though, was raise some very intriguing questions about individual identity and how much of our personalities and emotions are tied to our physical bodies.

Ultimately, I enjoyed this novel, although not quite as much as I did the first. (I also enjoyed the trailer, posted below–it was created by Rigler’s own personal Mr. Darcy.) As a 21st-century chick all the way, I naturally had a much easier time relating to Courtney than to Jane. Their inner struggles while dealing with the body swap, although of a similar nature, took on very different nuances. Still, watching Jane apply her own perspective to modern situations–such as working for an abusive boss–gave me a fresh way of looking at things that aren’t functioning the way they should be in my own life.

Which do you think would be more difficult, mentally, emotionally, and physically: traveling back in time like Courtney, or traveling forward in time like Jane? Why?

Coffee Time Romance


Rating: 4 cups

Miss Jane Mansfield remembers riding her horse, Belle, in Somerset, England in the year 1813. She fell off, bumped her head and blacked out. When she awakens, she is inside the body of Courtney Stone, a young woman living in Los Angeles, California in the year 2009. While life is baffling to Jane, she does discover she and the woman whose body she inhabits have many things in common. It is their love of Jane Austen which gives Jane a link to her former life.

Wes is a handsome young man who is beside Jane/Courtney from the start. He has been in love with Courtney for awhile, but his betrayal of her friendship put him on the outs with her friends. Now, Jane/Courtney needs him in order to cope in this world.

Imagine waking up in a time and place you have no idea even exists, complete with automobiles, television, Blackberrys and ipods. Courtney’s friends believe she is merely suffering from temporary memory loss. They do not realize she is not Courtney anymore. If life is not confusing enough for Jane, she has to go to work at a job she knows nothing about. Toss in the man who is by her side at a moment’s notice, and living in the twenty-first century may not be all bad. Falling in love may just find her not wanting to leave the twenty-first century.

The title of this book alone brought a smile to my face. The idea of waking up in the bed and body of a stranger would definitely be frightening, but what Jane has to deal with would petrify me. The differences Jane encounters in this time and place added so much humor to Ms. Rigler’s story. What made me laugh hardest was Jane’s reaction to the plethora of machines we use in our daily lives. I have never really given it a lot of thought until reading about Jane’s adventures. This is the follow-up to Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, but this book can stand on its own very well. I could not help but fall in love with this story and I hope you take the time to pick it up.

Reviewer for Coffee Time & More

College Candy

Saturday Read + Giveaway! Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler

July 25, 2009 – 11:30 am By Alex – Lakehead University

This week, along with the review, we will be having a giveaway! Three signed copies of “Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict” are up for grabs!

“Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict” is a companion to Laurie Viera Rigler’s first novel “Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict.” In “Confessions,” Courtney Stone, a modern 21st century blonde, finds herself trapped in the body of Jane Mansfield, a brunette English rose from the 1800’s. She must navigate through and cope with all the differences between her modern society and Victorian society, including bizarre medical and courtship practices.

“Rude Awakenings” runs parallel to “Confessions,” beginning with Jane Mansfield waking up in Courtney’s body in the 21st Century. She is confused and puzzled by her new surroundings and simply shocked when she finds her reflection to be a curvy blonde as opposed to a willowy brunette. Jane must navigate through Courtney’s everyday life as well; dealing with Wes, her former best friend who was involved in the breakup of her engagement and handling employment even though it shocks her. Seeing the modern world through naive eyes is an interesting concept and Rigler executes it flawlessly.

Although “Confessions” is humorous, I found “Rude Awakenings” to be absolutely hilarious. Jane’s confusion and enchantment with the modern world is both charming and laugh-inducing. From shocking Courtney’s friends by sporting the wedding gown that she intended to marry her ex-fiance in (Jane dubs it the only thing modest enough in Courtney’s closet), to insisting that her name is indeed Jane Mansfield although her friends maintain that Courtney has adopted the name of a long-dead sex symbol, the book is full of laughs. Courtney’s friends explain this odd behavior with a head injury Courtney sustained, making it more hilarious. Not only do her friends allow her to make a fool of herself, they accept it to help with her recovery.

The two stories are very well written and parallel each other in that the heroine of each are both on a quest for happiness. They both turn to Jane Austen in times of despair, are confused about love and, ultimately, unhappy with their lives. Through their time traveling, they both discover what they must do to achieve this happiness and the endings of both leave readers satisfied.

I recommend “Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict” to not only all you Jane Austen addicts out there, but everyone! It’s a great, feel-good read, with tons of laughs. With a couple super heartfelt novels that you can get lost in for an afternoon, I surely hope Laurie Viera Rigler comes back for more!

Do you want a signed copy of Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict? Just hop on your Twitter account (you know you have one!) and Tweet a link to this very review (and be sure to @CollegeCandy so we know you did it!) to all of your friends. Then have them RT it (with the @CollegeCandy so we know what’s goin’ on) to their friends. Whoever gets the most RTs by next Saturday, August 1st will get themselves a super special SIGNED COPY of this fantastic read. Happy Tweeting!

Dot Scribbles

Wednesday, 16 February 2011
Book Review: Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler 

Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict is the parallel book to Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict which I reviewed here. Confessions follows Courtney Stone falling into the life of Jane Mansfield in Regency England and Rude Awakenings is the opposite as we see what happens when Jane Mansfield takes over Courtney Stone’s life in the present day. I would urge you to read both books as they are great but you do not need to he read one of them to understand the other if you know what I mean.

As well as adjusting to being somebody completely new, Jane Mansfield also has to deal with all the modern surroundings in her new life. Used to travelling in horse-drawn carriages, Jane is petrified during her first outing in the car. She has no idea what a computer is and marvels at the cupboard in the kitchen that magically keeps the food cool.
Jane’s new friends (believing Courtney has concussion) have to fill in the gaps. They explain how she has recently broken off her engagement to Frank as she caught him with her wedding cake designer. They explain how she has a seriously demanding boss with a job she hates but won’t leave and also a very annoying mother. The one person who goes out of his way to help Courtney/Jane is Wes; he helps her get her life back on track and more importantly, how to use Google. However, Jane discovers that Wes covered up for Frank’s cheating and now she doesn’t know what to do. The only man she was beginning to have feelings for appears to be the last person she should trust.

Laurie Viera Rigler has written another highly entertaining book, I think it is a great idea to tell the story from Jane’s perspective. This book makes you think twice about all of the home comforts and equality for women that we take for granted by seeing it through the eyes of a woman who previously wouldn’t have imagined these things.
This book will appeal to many readers, especially those Jane Austen addicts out there, it’s a really lovely read.

E & K Family Book Review

Friday, November 11, 2011

What Would Jane Austen Say? Regency Miss Comes to Terms with the 21st Century: Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict, By Laurie Viera Rigler

Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict

Author: Laurie Viera Rigler
Published By: Dutton
Date Published: June, 2009
Pages: 293
Recommended Age: 13+ (E&K: Young Adult)
Reviewed By: Laurel Shimer, My Heart Beats Faster in Past Times,
Rating: 4


Jane Mansfield fell off her horse in England, in the early part of the nineteenth century. When she comes too, she has traveled forward in time nearly two hundred years, and moved to Los Angeles.

In the twenty-first century, Jane has become Courtney Stone*. Of course, like all time travelers­­, she needs to come to terms with where she is and how to function in that new era. Courtney (née Jane) does a lot more than master electronics and computers, figure out how to drive, quit her job and learn how modern women interact with the opposite sex. She also leaves a verbally abusive job, confronts the challenge of unemployment, and develops an independent spirit.

By the time the reader gets to the last page, Courtney has also located and read all the Jane Austen novels that were published after she left England and found true love. But most importantly she has developed a new sense of self-worth.

Laurel Shimer’s Thoughts: 

Linking your novel with Jane Austen is a hot gimmick. There are vampire stories linked to Jane (Ick! Not my style. Somebody else can review those), a mystery series (I’ve tried several and they don’t click for me), and modern-day takes on her romance stories. Several explore characters Miss Austen created. Others expand on situations in her well-known stories. I tried one that was set just after Elizabeth and Jane married Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bingley. As far as I was concerned, it was tedious, overly focused on uninteresting sexuality(it’s a romance novel crime to write boring sex scenes), and – worst of all- it didn’t ring true, when it came to the people that I know so well from Pride and Prejudice.

I have, however, enjoyed a couple of Jane Austen time travel romance books. I’m a romantic time travel author and blogger myself, so I try to stay on top of what’s coming out in romantic time travel fiction. When I read the work of other time travel authors, I contrast the way they transport their gal through time, how the protagonist accepts and adapts to her new situation, and how falling in love differs for the heroine who’s outside of her own-time comfort zone.

Ms. Rigler has her own take on these time travel romance plot essentials (which I’m not sharing to avoid spoilers!), but she delivers more than the basics. She brings her nineteenth century miss into modern times in two unexpected ways.
The first way is in the development of a significant female bond between the heroine and a new friend. Every admirer of Jane Austen’s stories knows that close relationships between women play a big part in Austen’s novels. It’s rare, however, to find significant gal-to-gal time in the literary descendants of her stories, modern romance novels. I would have liked to see Rigler really delve into, and demonstrate the spark that led to this relationship between these two women. Still, I enjoyed this aspect of the story.

The second unexpected, and very welcome, theme, was Jane/Courtney’s exploration of a new career. Unlike many other romance authors, Rigler doesn’t skate over the challenges of her heroine’s need to survive. Jane/Courtney figures out pretty quickly that nobody’s Daddy or Mama is going to come to her rescue when it comes to putting food in her refrigerator or keeping the power on. She resists the temptation to accept the one job that does fall in her lap for all the right reasons, and struggles to locate and secure basic employment. As a part of the workforce, Jane/Courtney learns a lot about what it means to be a modern person, putting in time doing the work that a servant would have done for her, in her past-times life. Of course, along the way she stumbles across her dream job. This is a romance novel after all!

The balance between the importance of female companionship in the English Regency era and a modern woman’s voyage of self-discovery through career identification, is an excellent balance for a woman’s time travel story. These elements take this book beyond standard romance fare and make it a thought-provoking story.

My Overall Opinion
I like the way Jane/Courtney learns not to take herself and the challenges of life in her new era, too seriously. More than a time travel romance, this book reads like a humorous take on a self-help book for dyed-in-the wool romantics.


Language: Clean Language
Adult Content: Reference to pre-marital sexuality as a modern societal norm, Occasional alcohol in context of adult meals and social life, Jane/Courtney does keep a bottle of vodka in the freezer, but she doesn’t overdo
Romantic and sexual interest between adults. Sexual daydreaming by the heroine. Marriage proposal/acceptance.
Violence: No Violence

Fly High



“Today’s women are no less desirous of love, and marrying for love, than they were in your time. But they, like so many women before them, simply fear it is an unattainable goal. And thus they settle for what fleeting plasures they can find, creating an endless cycle of pleasure, despair, ad infinitum. Human nature is the same today as it was in your time. The only difference between today’s world and your world is that people have more choices now than they did then.” ( RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT, p.265)

This Everything Austen Challenge has revealed a very pleasant and enriching experience to me. I must again thank Stephanie ( at STEPHANIE’S WRITTEN WORD) for this great adventure! Two days ago we were just discussing here on my blog the topic of dating and courting today respect to Jane Austen’s time and the discussion was brought about by Laurie Viera Rigler (HERE) , author of the book I’ve just finished as my third task for the challenge: RUDE AWAKENINGS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT.

This is my first Austen-based book, never read one before, only the original novels by Jane. So I’m not an expert of the genre. RUDE AWAKENINGS is the sequel of Laurie’s first novel, CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT, which I didn’ t read. What was this first experience like? Great pure amusement which reminded me the same kind of hilarious reaction I had after skeptically approaching LOST IN AUSTEN when the DVD got to me last September (or was it October?). I mean, I studied Jane Austen’s novels at university after reading some of them (only P & P and S & S) in my adolescence and that brought me to read them ( and every other novel ) professionally, because of my job (teaching literature). This is why I was rather skeptical toward Austen based fiction or adaptations. So, in order to read this novel for the challenge, I had to go back to the time I use to read just for fun day and night and leave apart the “professional tools”. Anyway, I was truly involved in the narration of the story, since Laurie knows Austen quite well and it is a pleasure to recognize that background while smiling at the entertaining series of misunderstandings, blunders, weird situations her time – travelling protagonist, JANE MANSFIELD, finds herself involved in . Jane wakes suddenly up in 2009 in Los Angeles but she is an English girl living in 1813, fondly in love with Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice. She is completely misplaced and shocked, her body even is a stranger’s one: she looks at herself in the mirror and sees a nice blondie everybody calls Courtney Stone!

Reading this novel I thought of LOST IN AUSTEN many times. There are many analogies between the stories, though I think CONFESSIONS has got more : In CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT, a twenty-first-century Austen fan Courtney Stone awakens one morning in 1813 England as a gentleman’s daughter, Jane Mansfield—with comic and romantic consequences. In RUDE AWAKENINGS as I told you, Jane, the gentleman’s daughter from 1813 England, finds herself occupying the body of Courtney in the urban madness of twenty-first-century L.A. Since in LOST IN AUSTEN an Austen fan, Amanda Price (Jemima Rooper in the photo on the left) swaps her life with Elizabeth Bennet, the protagonist of her favourite novel…I think it is obvious that I was always drawing comparisons while reading.

Have you seen LOST IN AUSTEN? It’s such fun!

I know many academic would turn up their noses at this kind of readings or TV series but I am convinced that reading as well as studying literature must be a pleasure. This is my philosophy even when I teach Austen or Dickens or Shakespeare to my students: they must contrast and compare those stories to their own experience and amuse themselves as much as they can. Not always an easy task, mine!

July 6, 6:49 PM San Diego Books Examiner Bonnie Silva

In Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, L.A. native Courtney Stone wakes up to find herself inhabiting the body of Miss Jane Mansfield a gentlewoman from Regency era England; if that is possible, consider then that in a parallel universe Miss Mansfield is waking up in the body of Courtney Stone in modern day L.A.

This is the amusing and heart rendering follow up, Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler, Jane wakes up one morning with a massive headache, concussion actually, and a buzzing that won’t stop. Where is her chambermaid, Barnes? Jane doesn’t realize it yet but she will soon come head to head with…

There are numbers, glowing red, on top of the offending lump of wood. 8 0 8. What is this wondrous thing? The numbers are in some sort of box, the front of it smooth and cold beneath my fingertips, the top of it scored and bumpy. I run my fingers over the bumps and the shrill sound stops. Oh, thank heaven.”

…an alarm clock. In fact there are many things, many fanciful things she is about to come in contact with such as small figures talking and dancing inside a small box, a horseless metal carriage, unbound hair and unrestricted clothing, hot and cold water out of a pipe, and an airborne machine with wings like a bird.

Jane eventually finds out that she, as Courtney Stone, had a concussion while swimming and hit her head on the bottom of the pool. With the help of friends Wes, Anna, Paula, Deepa, and a seemingly familiar yet mysterious fortune teller, Jane finds her way through the daze she is in and struggles to conform and figure out the modern world’s gizmos and gadgets as well as the shocking modern day morality. She is after all a gentleman’s daughter from the ninteenth century

Paula declares that she is taking Jane to see her cousin a respected psychopharmacologist, exactly what Wes doesn’t want for Jane. Fancy name for a high-priced drug pusher he says. But everyone does agree that Jane’s behavior is frightening. When Jane finds out the year is 2009…

“Two thousand nine?” I hear myself say, in that strange voice, before I am aware of having spoken. “Two thousand nine?” I disengage my arm from Paula’s grasp and see the faces of the three strangers. “Is this a joke?”

If it is, they are not laughing, and I am suddenly so dizzy that I grip the top of one of the chairs.

As Courtney struggles to adjust to life in Regency England, so too does Jane struggle to adjust to life in the 21st century. Jane begins to believe that what she is experiencing is a transmigration of the soul. And much like Courtney, Jane is beginning to find that her thoughts and Courtney’s thoughts are starting to blur into one. Will Jane ever return to her own body and her own time, and here’s a thought, does she really want to?