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5.0 out of 5 stars A SECOND DELIGHTFUL ADVENTURE FOR JANE AUSTEN, 16 Aug. 2012
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This review is from: Jane and the Man of Cloth (Jane Austen Mysteries) (Paperback)
This is the second book in the Jane Austen Mystery Series by Stephanie Barron.

In a newly discovered secret journal, Jane Austen documents her adventures as an amateur sleuth. In 1804, twenty-eight year old Jane and her family visit the charming seaside village of Lyme Regis for a September holiday, before returning to their home in Bath. On their way to Lyme, their carriage is overturned by a storm and as Jane's beloved sister Cassandra is seriously injured, they are forced to seek refuge at High Down Manor, the home of the mysterious Mr. Sidmouth. Jane hopes for a quite holiday with peaceful walks and enough time to work on her novel "The Watsons", however, when a man is found murdered and everything points to a notorious smuggler, Jane begins to investigate the case in order to expose the smuggler and bring the murderer to justice. Jane Austen, with her wit, her brilliant abilities of perception and her understanding of human nature is more than capable of solving any mystery; however this time, apart from the great danger she has to face, she must also tame her heart as everything points to Mr. Sidmouth and Jane despite her prejudice is dangerously attracted to him.

This series is excellent and this second novel was no exception. Set in England during the Napoleonic Wars, it is filled with action and historical events while still being a plausible and entertaining story for Austen's fans. Stephanie Barron has, once again, created a gripping mystery plot, brilliantly set in Austen's time, with a very convincing Jane as its heroine. As the story is narrated by Austen in her journal, the language is very similar to her existing letters and so realistic that reading it, I would often forget that it is indeed a work of fiction. The atmosphere of Lyme and the everyday life of the time is excellent, drawn with beautiful imagery and historical detail. The well developed characters are based on the types of characters created by Austen herself, and thus are very convincing and typical of their time.

In addition, the book includes excellent and very useful footnotes by Stephanie Barron, explaining some references to Austen's life and providing valuable information on the customs and the history of the time, in the form of "editor's notes".

The book also includes a preview of the third book in the series JANE AND THE WANDERING EYE: BEING THE THIRD JANE AUSTEN MYSTERY By Barron, Stephanie (Author) Mass Market Paperbound on 03-Nov-1998.

The novel can stand on its own, but as it makes many references to the previous novel in the series, Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor: Being the First Jane Austen Mystery (Jane Austen Mysteries), I think it is best to start from the beginning.
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