Book Reviews

Do you think of yourself as a BIBLIOPHILE? “A person who collects and has a great love of books.” I’m right there alongside you, then.

The following fleshes out what you will find in the “ABOUT THE AUTHOR” section of Two Teens in the Time of Austen, which is dedicated to my research on Mary Smith (1800-1842) and Emma Austen Leigh (1801-1876), sisters-in-law and sisters-of-the-heart, who were childhood neighbors in townhouses on the glorious avenue called Portland Place, London. One cannot write without doing extensive reading, so a lot of books that cross my threshold deal with England, Women, History, Jane Austen, Diaries, Letters. My blog dedicated to Diaries & LettersGeorgian Gems, Regency Reads, Victorian Voices – also has a books list (items on shelves, piled on floor, beside the bed, etc.) and a “exciting & new” list, books that catch my eye but haven’t quite made it into my library – yet. (I have only so much space AND so much spare cash.) Afraid that, at present (July 2022) I’ve let THAT last list lag. If I’m not actively *searching* for new publications, I’m looking up the FABULOUS “new releases” that Regency Explorer highlights.

Book reviews, however, take a great deal of time and effort. Listed on this page are reviews written for TWO TEENS (“Smith and Gosling”); for the local Jane Austen Society of North America region, “JASNA Vermont”; “official” JASNA reviews that have appeared in JASNA News (be advised: the online JASNA reviews have not updated since the Summer 2020 issue); and relevant reviews that were posted to AMAZON (a longer review may exist on the blog than on Amazon; such will be noted).

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Smith & Gosling book reviews:

Smith & Gosling book discussions:

  • A Thankless Child: The Life and Times of Georgiana Jane Henderson (1771-1850) (Susan Bennett) – brief introduction of the book
  • Travels with Lady Anne” – this blog post mentions a series of books: Stephen Taylor’s Defiance: The Life and Choices of Lady Anne Barnard; and the sources for such a biography, The Cape Diaries of Lady Anne Barnard (edited by A. M. Lewin Robinson; further volumes by Margaret Lenta and Basil Le Courdreur); these were originally published in South Africa
  • Life Afloat: Jane Austen and the Royal Navy” – mentions the biography of Jane Austen’s Transatlantic Sister: The Life and Letters of Fanny Palmer Austen by Sheila Johnson Kindred
  • Many Meanings of Womanhood” – notes the publication of Kathleen Anderson’s Jane Austen’s Women: An Introduction
  • My Dear Hamy” – notes receipt in the mail of My Dear Hamy: Insights and Intrigues at the Court of Caroline, Princess of Wales, a HUGE biography (over 700 pages) by Martin Thomas; generous with its quotes from the Princess of Wale’s correspondence
  • Enjoyable Reads: Journals of a Georgian Gentleman” – also notes receipt of a book I finally got around to reading five years later: big shout out for The Journal of a Georgian Gentleman: The Life and Times of Richard Hall, 1729-1801 by the prolific Mike Rendell
  • The Real Persuasion: An Intimate Portrait of a Real-Life Austen Heroine, by Peter James Bowman, the author of a *favorite* biography, The Fortune Hunter: A German Prince in Regency England, which focuses on Prince Pückler-Muskau
  • Founding Father in London” – notes the purchase of George Goodwin’s Benjamin Franklin in London: The British Life of America’s Founding Father
  • “Complexity & Comedy – Jane Austen Names Names” – notes the publication of Jane Austen’s Names: Riddles, Persons, Places, by Margaret Doody


JASNA book reviews:

(links open online reviews at

  • Madame Lefroy In Her Own Words,” review of The Letters of Mrs Lefroy: Jane Austen’s Beloved Friend, edited by Gavin Turner and Helen Lefroy. JASNA News, Summer, 2008.
  • Those Marrying Men,” reviews of Lydia Bennet’s Story, Jane Odiwe; and The Matters at Mansfield, Carrie Bebris. JASNA News, Spring, 2009.
  • Keeping Up Appearances,” review of John Styles, The Dress of the People: Everyday Fashion in Eighteenth Century EnglandJASNA News, Summer 2009.
  • Crafty Jane Austen,” review of Jennifer Forest, Jane Austen’s Sewing BoxJASNA News, Spring 2010.
  • Quite in a Fuss about the Child,” review of David Selwyn, Jane Austen and Children. JASNA News, Spring 2011.
  • Music, Virtue and Virtuosity,” review of Gillen D’Arcy Wood, Romanticism and Music Culture in Britain, 1770-1840JASNA News, Summer 2012.
  • Some Words of Jane Austen,” review of Lawrence W. Mazzano, Jane Austen: Two Centuries of CriticismJASNA News, Spring 2013.
  • Going Places,” review of Hazel Jones’s Jane Austen’s Journeys. JASNA News, Winter 2015.
  • Reading Austen in America,” review of Juliette Wells’ book of same name, JASNA News, Winter 2018.
  • Charlotte Lennox: An Independent Mind,” review of Susan Carlile’s biography; JASNA News, Fall 2019.
  • “Best Foot Forward,” duo review of Amelia Rauser, The Age of Undress: Art, Fashion and the Classical Idea of the 1790s and Kimberly S. Alexander, Treasures Afoot: Shoe Stories from the Georgian Era, JASNA News, Spring 2021.
  • “Refreshing Austen,” Review of Freya Johnston, Jane Austen, Early and Late, JASNA News, Summer 2022.


JASNA-Vermont online book reviews:

(links open a WordPress blog kept by local JASNA region)


Georgian Gems, Regency Reads, Victorian Voices:



[country house]

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