Jane of Austin: A Novel of Sweet Tea and Sensibility
Like many devoted Austen fans, I approach most modern Jane Austen adaptations with a combination of enthusiasm and dread—I WANT it to be wonderful, but what if it's terrible? Readers, this new take on Sense and Sensibility was so much fun. In this novel, two broke adult sisters and their sweet little sister flee expensive San Francisco to set up a new tea shop in Austin, Texas. The bones of Austen's original are visible, but Lodge doesn't hew too closely to the original, to her credit. I spent a happy afternoon devouring this book.
“Know your own happiness. You want nothing but patience – or give it a more fascinating name, call it hope.”
― Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility
Just a few years after their father’s business scandal shatters their lives, Jane and Celia Woodward find themselves forced out of their San Francisco tea shop. The last thing Jane wants is to leave their beloved shop on Valencia Street, but when Celia insists on a move to Austin, Texas, the sisters pack up their kid sister Margot and Jane’s tea plants, determined to start over yet again.
But life in Austin isn’t all sweet tea and breakfast tacos. Their unusual living situation is challenging and unspoken words begin to fester between Jane and Celia. When Jane meets and falls for up-and-coming musician Sean Willis, the chasm grows deeper.
While Sean seems to charm everyone in his path, one person is immune – retired Marine Captain Callum Beckett. Callum never meant to leave the military, but the twin losses of his father and his left leg have returned him to the place he least expected—Texas.
In this modern spin on the Austen classic, Sense and Sensibility, the Woodward sisters must contend with new ingredients in unfamiliar kitchens, a dash of heartbreak, and the fragile hope that maybe home isn’t so far away.