Monday, September 15, 2014

Persuasion, Captain Wentworth and Cracklin' Cornbread {a Family Christian Bloggers review and giveaway}

Persuasion, Captain Wentworth and Cracklin' Cornbread, christian fiction, fiction, hathaway
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Family Christian Stores through the Family Christian Blogger program.  This post does contain affiliate links.  I was not required to write a positive review, and any affiliate relationship does not impact my opinions. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

I had mentioned a while back that I've started reviewing as a Family Christian Blogger.  I'm pretty impressed with Family Christian Stores, and look forward to the occasional review I get to do for them.

Review and giveaway, in this case.

My first opportunity involves a book by an author I had never heard of.  Persuasion, Captain Wentworth and Cracklin' Cornbread by Mary Jane Hathaway was a whole lot of fun.

Mary Jane Hathaway is a homeschooling mom of six, living in a small town in Oregon.  This is her third novel that focuses on Jane Austen, the South, Civil War history, and food.  Pride, Prejudice and Cheese Grits and Emma, Mr. Knightley and Chili-Slaw Dogs are the other two.   The main characters of those two books make appearances in this one.  (And the books are now in my wish list!)

The basic plot of this novel is pretty simple.  Lucy Crawford and Jeremiah Chevy were an item in high school, but Lucy's wealthy family didn't like Jem, as he was white trailer trash.  They convinced Lucy to dump him.  That's all ancient history, from about a decade ago.

Now, Jem is a doctor, and Lucy's family is facing bankruptcy.  Dr. Chevy is back in town as part of the Rural Physicians Program (to help pay off his student loans), working at a free medical clinic, that is about to start renting the back of the Crawford's antebellum mansion.  Can Jem forgive Lucy for dumping him?  Can Lucy forgive herself? 

If you are an Austen fan, that ought to sound familiar.  A lot like Persuasion, in fact.

If you aren't at all familiar with Persuasion, or with Jane Austen at all, Hathaway weaves in enough of the storyline so that you will see the similarities.  I confess.  Persuasion is one (the only, actually) Austen novel I haven't read, nor have I seen one of the many movie adaptations.  I'm rectifying that too.

What makes this book so fun isn't just that it is a modern retelling of the Austen story.  With the Civil War re-enactors, and Lucy's work at a Civil War battlefield site, in charge of the interpretive center.  During the course of the story, the center acquires a diary of a woman who disguised herself as a man and fought in the war. 

I loved the mix of Jane Austen fans (a Regency-styled wedding is held during the novel, with Lucy as a bridesmaid and Jem as a groomsman) and Civil War re-enactors, along with lots of details of modern life.  Bill collectors, finding time to visit the hairdresser, family relationships, the plight of the poor, race relations -- all fit into the storyline somewhere.

And it ends with recipes.  I'm making cracklin' cornbread for sure.  Today, however, it was just cornbread.  No cracklin'


Yummmm.

You can win a copy of Persuasion, Captain Wentworth and Cracklin' Cornbread!




a Rafflecopter giveaway


15 comments:

Lori said...

I love Persuasion, have read the book, and watched the movie. This book sounds totally interesting to me and I hope I win it! I have to read this one!

Rebecca Ivey Collier said...

I have not read it the book, do live in the south, and love Civil War re-enactments. :)

Tess said...

I love Jane Austen and I have read Persuasion at least twice. I'm not from the south but my dad was. I have never seen a civil war enactment.

3gigglygirlsathome said...

Definitely a Jane Austen fan but I don't think I have read Persuasion. This book sounds like it was a really fun read. Will definitely have to try to get my hands on a copy to read.- Lori H

Kemi Quinn said...

Austen fan here! Saw a few adaptations of Persuasion. Loved the book. My aunt complains of the main character "losing her bloom" but it's still a lovely read. Never heard of this book but I would love to read it!

Kym Thorpe said...

I've read everything by Jane Austen, and I love Persuasion. I haven't seen a movie adaptation though. I would love to read this book - it's about all kinds of things I like!

Brittney Mom's Heart said...

Haven't read Persuasion, but I do love Jane Austen. I am from the south, but I actually haven't seen any civil war reenactments!

Brandi (@Fitzysmom) said...

Love reading Jane Austen and all of the knock offs her novels have inspired. I'm especially enjoying this author's take on the modern versions.

Dakota122503 said...

Persuasion is my favorite Austen novel! It doesn't get as much attention as Pride and Prejudice although I think it's equally good if not better.

Melanie said...

Love the movie but never read the book. But I AM from the South!

zekesmom10 said...

I don't think I've ever actually read any Austen. Or seen the movie adaptations either. Sad state of affairs, but I love a good story. We're all heading to a re-enactment locally (yes, in VT. The northernmost civil war battle, is the claim.), just next week.

Lynn @ TDHGP said...

I'm from the South. And we've been to lots of reenactments! We love visiting the plantations and cemeteries, too.

Jeniffer D said...

I adore Jane Austen!

Linda Perry said...

I love Jane Austen. My daughter is an even bigger fan than I am!

Shecki Grtlyblesd said...

I haven't read Persuasion, but I've watched it more than a few times. :)