Spin-off, fan fiction or literature?
How can the above question be answered? Online social networking and with it, the birth of the kindle are abuzz with Jane Austen-inspired fiction. Type ‘Jane Austen’, ‘Pride and Prejudice’ or ‘Pemberley’ into Google, Twitter or Amazon and you’ll be sure to find related work. The sheer amount of fiction produced and the various types inspired by Austen are quite incredible. There are sequels and prequels, paranormal novels (did someone say vampires?), young adult books and many contemporary spinoffs.
It is a difficult debate, deciding how to define this sort of fiction. Other questions quickly follow like how should it be classed, is it making Jane Austen into a caricature of herself, can any of this fiction ever really compete with the original?
Quite simply we are not ready to answer these questions yet, if ever. But as far as we are concerned, if people are reading and taking inspiration from Austen’s works, then this cannot be a bad thing. Perhaps you have finished reading all of her novels more than once, and are still yearning for more summer reading. For this reason, we’ve created a list of five diverse Jane Austen-related books that can easily top up your summer reading collection.
The Unexpected Miss Bennett by Patrice Sarath
Murder on the Bride’s Side by Tracy Kiely
Pride, Prejudice & Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith
Betrayal of the Blood Lilly by Lauren Willig
Seducing Mr. Darcy by Gwen Cready
If you can’t decide from this plentiful array of literature then simply pick up the anthology Jane Austen Made Me Do It edited by Laurel Ann Nattress with several other contributors. A mixture of contemporary stories and historical styles, with some great stuff about Austen and her family too. There is certainly something for everyone.
One thing is for sure, if imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Jane Austen can rest happily in the knowledge that her novels will stand the test of time.
For summaries and more information about Jane Austen Made Me Do It, visit this www.austenprose.com
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