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Captain Wentworth's Diary Paperback – 1 Aug 2008


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Product details

  • Paperback: 293 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley Publishing Group (1 Aug 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425223523
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425223529
  • Product Dimensions: 14.1 x 2 x 20.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,484,800 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Amanda Grange's retellings of Jane Austen's novels from the point of view of the heroes are hugely popular and deservedly so . . . her latest novel, Captain Wentworth's Diary, a retelling of Austen's Persuasion, will entrance and enthrall old and new fans alike." -- Julie Bonello, Single Titles

"In this retelling of Jane Austen's Persuasion, Captain Wentworth's thoughts take centre stage, and very revealing they are too. His love, rejection, bitterness and ultimate constancy are laid bare, but never in a way that compromises the original. Amanda Grange has taken on the challenge of reworking a much loved romance and succeeds brilliantly." -- Sara Wilson, Historical Novels Review --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Amanda Grange lives in Cheshire. Robert Hale has published twelve of her novels, including Lord Deverill's Secret, Stormcrow Castle, Darcy's Diary and Mr Knightley's Diary. Visit her website at www.amandagrange.com --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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At last I am on my way to Somerset! Read the first page
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Susan Smith on 1 July 2009
Format: Paperback
I think most readers and lovers of Austen will know before picking up these pastiches and "extensions" whether or not it is their "scene" and therefore should not be hypercritical simply because a writer has attempted one. I have not read many of them and so tried to approach this one from a neutral POV. Capt Wentworth and Col Brandon are two of my favourite Austen male characters so I was intrigued to see what the author would do with them.

The story is a good "fit" with Persuasion and I think that overall the author has done a good job of creating a workable synergy. She fills in some gaps, shows how the initial courtship may have progressed and imagines Frederick's feelings about it and the resulting rejection. I liked his brother Edward who gets quite a central role in this book and is that sort of robust, jolly, down to earth, sensible clergyman so much missed today in the C of E. I'd have liked to learnt more about his story and his wife.

If there is a downside to the story, for me it is that I am not now so sure if I still love Capt Wentworth. In some respects, he is a little hard on Anne (owing, I suppose, to his own youth initially) but once he meets Anne again, I thought that he does act pretty realistically for a young and ambitious man. He is pretty class conscious himself making a good match for Sir Walter's snobbery. And yet, he has friends and family who are strictly middle class. Somehow, the author has given him not one but two clay feet and in doing so, has rubbed off a little of his romantic glow.

I agree with the reviewer here who said it was as well that the author did not attempt to write about his naval career - that would have been very much against the grain of Austen's stories because she never directly alludes to current events in her life.

All in all I think this was a pretty good effort and I look forward to reading Col Brandon's story which I think ought to be quite interesting.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Merlin56 on 1 July 2009
Format: Paperback
I've been a Jane Austen fan for over 40 years and I constantly wish she had written more books. I visited the Jane Austen Centre in Bath and saw this book - I had re-read (for the 100th time!) Persuasion on my way to Bath and thought I'd give this a try - not really expecting much because I have found follow ups and imitations of Jane very poor - but I really enjoyed this - he sounded just like Captain Wentworth - I read it all in the 4 hour journey home and I'm now tempted to try Mr Darcy and Colonel Brandon's diaries. My favourite male character is Edward Ferrers from Sense and Sensibility so fingers crossed Amanda will write his too.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J. Lesley TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 23 Aug 2009
Format: Paperback
This novel is Amanda Grange's attempt to fill in some of the blanks left for the reader of the Jane Austen novel Persuasion. It gives us the perspective of the happenings in that novel from Captain Frederick Wentworth's point of view.

I enjoyed reading this book. I did not realize that the first 117 pages would all be this authors imaginings of the meeting and then gentle courtship between Anne Elliot and Frederick Wentworth. We are given much detail of the meetings between these two characters and are allowed to see how their admiration for each other turns to love. Commander Wentworth (his rank at that point in the story) was understandably stunned when Anne Elliot told him that she could not accept his offer of marriage after all. He reacted in a completely normal way, he was hurt, surprised, and very angry. So angry that he immediately left the area determined never to think about her again.

The story picks up eight years later. I am glad that the author did not give us any details of what happened to Wentworth (now having the rank of Captain) during the time of his battling the French in the war with Napoleon. Instead, we see what he was doing during these years through reminiscences with Harville and Benwick. When Frederick goes back into Somersetshire he feels Anne has lost her youth, her beauty and her bloom. Yet after only a short time of being around her he finds himself wondering if he has actually managed to erase all tender feelings for her after all.

I have now read three of these 'interpretations' of Jane Austen novels as written by Amanda Grange. Of Mr. Darcy's Diary, Mr. Knightley's Diary, and Captain Wentworth's Diary, I can definitely say that I enjoyed Mr. Darcy's Diary the most. After that would have to come Captain Wentworth's Diary.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Helen Hancox TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 27 Nov 2008
Format: Paperback
Amanda Grange's writing style is always very pleasant to read and this book was no different. She continues her theme of writing some of Jane Austen's stories from the hero's point of view, supposedly in diary form (although I doubt any gentlemen of that era would have written diaries quite like these!)

Captain Wentworth is the hero of 'Persuasion', a book which starts eight years after the characters had first met, become engaged, broken the engagement and moved on to separate lives. In Amanda Grange's book almost half of the text is given up to that time in 1806 when Wentworth and Miss Anne Elliot first meet and fall in love. We see how they meet each other, how they get to spend a little time with each other and how Wentworth gradually begins to realise the value of Anne and that she and he have compatible minds and ideas. The second half of the book follows Austen's story from Wentworth's point of view with many scenes and dialogue the same and others extended. Much less attention is paid in this book to some of the other characters (for example the younger Mr Elliot) and in fact the book seems to go by quite quickly.

Although we are reading events and feelings written by Captain Wentworth I didn't feel I knew him any better after this book than I had from reading Austen's one, and Anne less so. However the story was very enjoyable to read, even if one knew how it would end, and I didn't feel the author took any liberties with Austen's ideas. There were a few little slips into American English (the verb 'to quit' was used a few times and the concept of 'visiting with' someone used in a non-English way) but mostly this was a very successful read and one that would appeal to most Austen fans, particularly those who would have liked to know how Wentworth and Anne Elliot first got to know each other.

Originally published for Curled Up With A Good Book © Helen Hancox 2008
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