The Jane Austen Handbook: Proper Life Skills from Regency England by Margaret C. Sullivan

Title: The Jane Austen Handbook: Proper Life Skills from Regency England
Author: Margaret C. Sullivan
Published: 2007
Pages: 210
Rating: ***
jane austen handbookEvery young lady dreams of a life spent exchanging witty asides with a dashing Mr. Darcy, but how should you let him know your intentions? Seek counsel from this charming guide to Jane Austen’s world. Its step-by-step instructions reveal the practicalities of life in Regency England, including sensible advice on:

•  How to behave at your first ball
•  How to ride sidesaddle
•  How to decline an unwanted marriage proposal
•  How to improve your estate
—and much more. Offering readers a glimpse into day-to-day life in Jane Austen’s time, The Jane Austen Handbook is the perfect companion for fans of her novels and their film adaptations, complete with detailed information on love among the social classes, currency, dress, and nuances of graceful living. (from Goodreads)

Thoughts: I won this book in a giveaway hosted by Rachel over at A Home Between the Pages and sponsored by Quirk Books in celebration of the 200th anniversary of the publication of Pride and Prejudice. The book is structured as a guide to life in Regency England, the time when Jane Austen’s books were published and when they take place. There are four sections divided by subject: general, everyday things, romance, and social gatherings. It also has an appendix with a short biography of Jane Austen, a short guide to her novels and other works, a guide to the different TV and movie adaptions of her novels, and a glossary of unfamiliar words used during the period.
     I really like the look of this book; it’s a small hardback with different shades of purple text and various backgrounds and borders throughout. It also has gorgeous purple and white illustrations that really add to the feel of the book.
     I really enjoyed this book. It covers a wide range of topics, from how to be an ‘accomplished’ lady, to how to elope to Scotland and how to get rid of unwanted guests. Before each short chapter there is a quote from one of Austen’s novels related to the subject about to be discussed. The book is written in an engaging,  slight breezy manner that fits this book perfectly. It’s obvious that the author is a real fan- in fact, she runs a blog dedicated to Austen and is a member of the Jane Austen Society of North America.
     This book was really fun to read and I learned a lot of interesting things along the way. This is not a long book and it can be read in an hour or two. I spent a lovely afternoon with it and am sure I will enjoy browsing the text and illustrations in the future!
     Thanks again Rachel and Quirk Books for gifting me with a copy!

 

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About hillarypat

I'm a recent college graduate and this is my blog where I talk about whatever happens to be on my mind- mostly books!
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One Response to The Jane Austen Handbook: Proper Life Skills from Regency England by Margaret C. Sullivan

  1. Pingback: February Round Up and Looking Toward March | ahorseandacarrot

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