September 10, 2009

Review of Lydia Bennet's Story by Jane Odiwe and a Giveaway!

Synopsis:  In Lydia Bennet's Story we are taken back to Jane Austen's most beloved novel, Pride and Prejudice, to a Regency world seen through Lydia's eyes where pleasure and marriage are the only pursuits.  (from Barnes & Noble)

Jane Austen has become quite a valuable commodity within the last decade or so, both in the literary and movie worlds, and reading about a new (or relatively new) Austen sequel has become par for the course. 

I found Lydia Bennet's Story interesting and original precisely because Jane Odiwe took a secondary character from Pride and Prejudice and elaborated on her own very twisted and dramatic plot.  If you are familiar with Pride and Prejudice, you know that Lydia is Lizzy's youngest sister, and a very spoiled one at that.  Due to her recklessness in running away with Wickham, she seriously jeopardizes the potential future marriages of her sisters and very nearly sullies her family's good name. 

As she was a secondary character in Pride and Prejudice, we heard briefly about her exploits but not from her point of view; nor did we know what Wickham said to her to cause her to throw caution to the wind with a foolhardy elopement or exactly what happened with the couple during those weeks in London before their hastily arranged marriage or, outside of their return to Longbourne, of their lives as a newlywed couple.   

Lydia Bennet's Story alternates between Lydia's diary and a third person accounting, showing Lydia as flirty, flighty, immature and petulent.  Ms. Odiwe stays faithful to Jane Austen, both in her portrayal of Lydia as well as Wickham, who naturally reveals himself to be as spoiled and flighty as Lydia.

I enjoyed hearing a portion of Pride and Prejudice from Lydia's viewpoint, as well as having the gaps filled in for portions of the story we were not privy to in Ms. Austen's rendition.  Ms. Odiwe's descriptions of the period, the dress, the language, is spot on and a true compliment to both Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice.    The introduction of new characters move the story along fluidly and seem as natural as Lydia ogling a new bonnet.

In a market saturated with Austen sequels (not that I'm complaining, mind you, because the more the merrier, in this Austen-obsessed reader's opinion), Lydia Bennet's Story stands out and makes an excellent reading choice.

Now . . . for the GIVEAWAY!!!

I am offering up my own like-new, very gently read copy of Lydia Bennet's Story to a lucky reader.  

Here is all you need to do:

* Leave me a comment with an email address to contact you (worth 1 entry)

For 2 extra entries:

* Become a follower or subscriber of my blog (let me know if you already are and let me know if you become one) (Just click on the "Follow" or "Subscribe" button located on the left side of my blog)

For 3 extra entries: 

* Add me to your blogroll and/or mention my giveaway on your blog (and leave a link) or Twitter it

That's all!  
This giveaway is open to U.S. and Canadian residents only. No P.O. boxes. I will draw the winner on Monday, October 5 and email the lucky reader.

Good luck!


Stormi said...

I am just now learning about all of these austen continuations and I would love to read this book.


Sheila (bookjourney) said...

Finally a new Austen book that I may enjoy reading! :)

I follow your blog and I have linked your giveaway to my giveaway page. Click on my name here and it will take you to the link.

Sheila Deeth said...

Sounds interesting. She certainly seemed to be a character with a story to tell.

I've just started following your blog, and added you to my blogroll.

sdeeth at msn dot com

Sheila (bookjourney) said...

forgot to leave my email: journey through books @ gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I would love to be entered in your draw. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I am already a follower of your blog.

Anonymous said...

I would love a chance to read this book!!! thanks for the giveaway! this book looks excellent!

sensitivemuse at gmail dot com
you are also on my blog roll, fyi :)

Oregon Kimm said...

I'm so excited at finding out exactly what Wickham said to Lydia (not that it would take much) to get her to run away--or perhaps it was the other way around? Hmm...

I'll gladly enter your drawing.

I'm a new follower/subscriber.

I've tweeted the giveaway here:

Thank you so much!

Kimm from Oregon

VillageDianne said...

I am commenting and also following your blog. I love Austen's novels, especially P&P, Persuasion, and Northanger Abbey.
I am glad to hear that Lydia's Story is well written. I read Darcey's Story but found it disappointing.
I wish someone would do a really good film adaptation of Northanger Abbey. Some years back I saw a production on my local PBS channel, a BBC production I think, and it was atrocious. Bizarre plot alterations, totally against the intentions of the author.

Looking forward to reading your blog.


Lori Johnston said...

Did you see Masterpiece Theater's "Northanger Abbey"? I think it came out last year. I do know it's available on DVD now. I thought it was very well done - - much, much better than the crappy BBC 1986 version.

Marian Perera said...

I remember reading somewhere that although Jane Austen published only six books, there are over sixty sequels to these by other authors.

Boggles the mind and gladdens the heart. :)

I'd love to read Lydia Bennet's story. Please enter me into your giveaway too.

Marian - mdperera at hotmail dot com

Jane Odiwe said...

Hi Lori - I found your lovely review on Amazon today and just wanted to say you've made my day! Thanks so much - I am so thrilled that you enjoyed my book. I have a new book, Willoughby's Return, coming out in November - there are more details on my blog as well as my Jane Austen paintings and info about Jane, and more about Lydia: and website:

Best wishes to you all!
Jane Odiwe

tea said...

+2 I subscribe by email.

tea said...

I have blogged about the giveaway on my blog in the sidebar. Thanks for considering me.

Tea said...

Here is my link.

Linna said...

I would love to read this book. Please do enter me.

linna.hsu at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I hadn't heard of this book before today, but I definitely want to read it now!

martinack_75 AT shaw DOT ca

Nancye said...

This looks like an interesting book.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

+2 Follower

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

+2 Subscribe via email

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Lucy said...

Hi:) I just stumbled on your blog through Jane Austen and Co. at the book blogs- and I'm so glad I did. You've got a great blog! I love Austen too and I guess I'm just in time to catch the end of this great giveaway:)

You've given this book a lovely review -thanks:)

I just became a follower-
and, just tweeted:

Sheila (bookjourney) said...

Looks like another one I would like to read.

I am a follower of you blog

journey through book s@ gmail dot com

Meredith said...


My name is Meredith and I just saw your post on Book Blog, I am new at blogging and would love to put your blog on my blog roll because it looks like we enjoy reading some of the same books! My blog is called "Austenesque Reviews" if you want to check it out. Thanks for the great giveaway. I haven't read this book yet and I would like to.


JMom said...

I would love to read this sequel!

JMom said...

I just followed your blog.

JMom said...

I am more than happy to add you to my blogroll on Found Not Lost, my review blog.

pippirose said...

I hope I'm not too late!
Looks like a terrific book.
I am a follower of your blog.
pippirose59 at gmail dot com