I was provided a complimentary copy of this book by NetGalley. I was not compensated for this review and all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I was not required to write a positive review.Lies Jane Austen Told Me by Julie Wright
Published by Shadow Mountain on 2017
Genres: Clean & Wholesome, Contemporary, Fiction, Romance
Ever since Emma read Pride and Prejudice, she's been in love with Mr. Darcy and has regarded Jane Austen as the expert on all things romantic. So naturally when Emma falls for Blake Hampton and he invites her home to meet his parents, she is positive an engagement is in her future. After all, Blake is a single man in possession of a good fortune, and thus must be in want of a wife.
But when it turns out that what Blake actually wants is more of a hook-up than a honeymoon, Emma is hurt, betrayed, and furious. She throws herself deeper into her work as CMO of Kinetics, the fastest growing gym franchise in the nation. She loves her work, and she's good at it, which is why she bristles when her boss brings in a consultant to help her spearhead the new facilities on the East Coast. Her frustration turns to shock when that consultant turns out to be Blake's younger brother, Lucas.
Emma is determined not to fall for Lucas, but as she gets to know him, she realizes that Lucas is nothing like his brother. He is kind and attentive and spends his time and money caring for the less fortunate.
What she can't understand is why Lucas continues to try to push her back into Blake's arms when he so clearly has fallen as hard for her as she has fallen for him. It isn't until Lucas reveals to Emma that he was adopted into the Hampton family that she begins to understand his loyalty to Blake as well as his devotion to the child April-she is Lucas's biological niece.
Emma opens up to Lucas about the feelings of abandonment she has harbored ever since she was a child and her mother left the family. As she helps Lucas deal with his past demons, she is able to exorcise some of her own.
Realizing that her love life is as complicated as anything Jane Austen could have dreamed up, Emma must find a way to let Blake know that it's time for him to let her go and to let Lucas know it's time for him to love her back.
You know how when you sit down and read a book and then suddenly you reach the last page and you wonder where the time went? I mean, I know that there’s hours invested in this book but where did they go? And how did it already end when you aren’t ready? I also have to admit a couple of things that may decrease my standing as a female reader in the bookish world. I’ve never been into Jane Austen. I’ve not actually ever read her books, that I remember. Is that bad? I didn’t fall for this book by the cover, it really didn’t do anything for me. The title was catchy but the synopsis was a winner for me. I have another confession. I’ve had this book sitting on my Kindle for months. Months! Earlier this year it appeared on my NetGalley feed and something screamed ‘pick me! pick me!’ so I picked it. Then it did the dreaded roll over to Older Than 3 Months before the release date ever came into view. It’s like a personal timer I have to beat ya know? How is that my fault? It’s not! Sometimes you just have to live with your silent personal shame of Older Than 3 Months.
Let’s talk about this amazing book. I was taken in the first few pages when Emma talked about how she was breaking up with Jane Austen. She was fed up with the lies that there was happily ever after and romance and love for everybody. I hear ya sister! Of course the ending of the first chapter sealed the deal and I needed Emma’s spunk. “That was when my palm connected with his cheek in a way that would leave a handprint on his great grandchildren.” Girl’s got spunk! It went downhill a little bit from there. The dreaded love triangle. Brother vs Brother. There are few worse than that particular triangle. I almost became cliche to watch the two fall for each other all the while the second brother was talking up the jilting other brother that Emma had chosen to dump. Too much. The best friend was a bit redeeming but I felt like she had her own set of baggage that needs it’s own story…just sayin’.
This book is so contemporary that it concerns me. There are truths in this story that have the potential to be timeless. However, the contemporary use of current social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, even Indeed) means that in time, potentially even just a few years, becomes obsolete. That aside I loved this story. The imitating and imitated Emma. The Blake that is a complete soulless jerk that has the potential to find his soul. Lucas, who cares more about his own baggage and his brother’s feelings than is own. The whole messed up cast of characters. The time I spent with them was part yelling at the pages, part reading faster to figure it all out, yet part reading slower so it didn’t come to an end. There are definitely timeless truths in this book that would benefit any reader, even the fun parts. I’ll leave you with just one more quote from the book that I loved.