Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Audiobook Inspection: Austenland by Shannon Hale (#everythingausten)

Size: 87 MB (Audible)
Length: 6 hours, 20 minutes
Author: Shannon Hale
Narrator: Katherine Kellgren

Plot Sketch: Jane Hayes wants to get married, but she has a problem. She wants to marry Mr. Darcy. Not just any Mr. Darcy, but Mr. Darcy as played by Colin Firth in the BBC version made for TV, which she hides in her houseplant when people come over so that they won't judge her for having it out. A wealthy great aunt comes to visit her and discovers her secret passion for Darcy, and tells her that it is normal. Fast forward a little and the great aunt dies, and great news, Jane is in the will. When she meets with the lawyer, she finds out that her great aunt has left her a special Austen-themed vacation. This is the story of her time spent at Austenland, where she lived, breathed, and played everything Regency.

Plot Verdict: I Heart It! I really enjoyed this book. During the last forty-five minutes, I squeed a lot. I mean, a LOT. It's a darling story, a little predictable, but darling nonetheless. If you are an Austen fan, this is a must. (and if you're a woman and not an Austen fan, please email me, I'd like to a) know more and b) be able to say I know such a person) Shannon Hale has done a wonderful job of creating a story for all women, (yeah, no men that I know would like this one) young and old, married and unwed.

Narration Verdict: I Heart It. I loved the bit of dramitization that Kellgren does with her own voice, it made the six hours go by pretty fast and added a great bit of depth to the story that it would have lacked on audio otherwise. I think she did a great job and based on her performance in this audiobook, would seek out other audiobooks she reads because they'd definitely hold my interest. Would recommend her to you as well!

Notes:
  • This was listened to as part of the Everything Austen challenge, which I annonced that I was participating in on July 2nd.
  • Follow people's progress through the challenge on Twitter by searching the hashtag #everythingausten
  • Please forgive any character spelling errors as I do not have a written copy of this novel.
  • Read more about this story on Squeetus, the official site of Shannon Hale.

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