Friday, December 28, 2018

Ordinary, Extraordinary Jane Austen

Ordinary, Extraordinary Jane Austen. Deborah Hopkinson. Illustrated by Qin Leng. 2018. 40 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: It is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen is one of our greatest writers. But it might surprise you to know that Jane lived a simple life. She wasn't rich or even very famous in her time.

Premise/plot: Ordinary, Extraordinary Jane Austen is a picture book biography of Jane Austen. The narrative is perfectly suitable for sharing with young readers. Yet it may delight older readers--adult readers--even more. What age is the right age for a person to "meet" Jane Austen?

My thoughts: What a lovely book! I enjoyed this one so much. I love, love, love Jane Austen. Though truth be told, I love Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte more than any individual novel by Jane Austen. (With the exception of Persuasion. Persuasion and Jane Eyre are probably too much of a tie to decide which one is my absolute, most favorite book.) I didn't start reading or watching Austen until I was an adult. (Unless you count Clueless as an introduction to Emma. I think I might have even read Emma as a teen, but I can't remember for sure. I think it was my first Austen to buy--and I did buy it because of Clueless.)

I found the writing to be wonderful.
There were plenty of stories for her to read, too. Her father's great library boasted five hundred books (almost all of them by men). Since Jane had little outside schooling, the library was her classroom. And while Jane devoured everything, from history to poetry to biographies, she loved novels best of all. 
The illustrations were PERFECT.

Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Total: 10 out of 10


© 2018 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

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I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

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