Vintage Jane Austen: Series Spotlight, Giveaway, and More!


Hello ladies and gents! Today I have the opportunity to introduce you to Vintage Jane Austen, a multi-author series of Jane Austen retellings. I’ve only read two so far (Emmeline and Perception), but I hope to read them all sometime in the future.

Honestly, this whole idea is just super neat. Retelling all the Jane Austen books (except Northanger Abbey *sighs* Too bad … I love that book …) in the 1930s? Sign me up! I think this is a unique and interesting idea.

So, on to the spotlight!

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The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy

Title: The Scarlet Pimpernel

Author: Baroness Orczy

Series: The Scarlet Pimpernel, #1

Genre: Classic Adventure/Romance

Era: 1790s (French Revolution)

Setting: England and France

Source: from library (read with my mom)

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars

The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy


Armed with only his wits and his cunning, one man recklessly defies the French revolutionaries and rescues scores of innocent men, women, and children from the deadly guillotine. His friends and foes know him only as the Scarlet Pimpernel. But the ruthless French agent Chauvelin is sworn to discover his identity and to hunt him down.

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I really enjoyed this book. It has definitely earned a place amongst my favorites! I think it’s one of those books everyone should read, along with Austen. It’s both humorous and thrilling, romantic and adventurous.

Plot: 5/5

This is genius. Absolute genius.

A dashing hero is saving the aristocrats from the dreaded guillotine. A beautiful woman fights for her marriage, which seems to be falling apart at the seams. An evil man plots to capture the dashing hero.

The plot is sooo good! I can’t begin to describe how much I enjoyed all the twists and turns. I swear I didn’t guess a single plot twist before it happened … not a single one! I was surprised every time.

It was so good that I’m just gonna have to send you off to read it. ‘Cause I can’t tell you with words how amazing it is.

Characters: 5/5

The characters were awesome, too! They were all beautifully developed and loveable – or hateful, in the case of the villains. I’ll describe a few of my favorites.

Marguerite … who can hate this girl? She comes off as a little silly and self-centered at first, but we soon learn her true mettle. She’s awesome.

Percy: *swoons* HE IS SO AMAZING I LOVE HIM! He’s got to be my favorite hero. Well, my favorite hero from classic fiction, anyway. Except … well, maybe he’s not my absolute favorite hero, but he’s up there! Top ten at least!

Chauvelin: I hate you. Die. But really, he was so absolutely despicable that I kinda admired the character development. Such evil! Such malice! Such hatred!

There were several other notable characters, but I won’t go into them.

Setting: 4/5

There wasn’t a ton of work done on setting, but I did enjoy everything about English social life at the time and then the French upheaval. The more I read about the French Revolution, the angrier I get. *glares at the evil French Revolution peeps* Seriously, that was so awful! I was shocked … I hadn’t realized it was that bad until I started studying it this year.

Writing: 5/5

*grins* I’m a sucker for old books. And old writing. I wish I could write like that and magically not bore secular readers. So yes, loved the writing. I really enjoyed the author’s style.

Content: 2/5

Language: Percy exclaims, “Odd’s fish!” and “Sink me!” and such. Otherwise, no.

Violence: mentions of the guillotine and people getting killed by it. Lots of talk of killing (’cause it’s Le Revolution!).

Sexual: Percy and Marguerite kiss a couple times (I think), but there are no details.

This was a pretty clean book, though the whole thing with the French Revolution might scare younger readers. Okay for any young adult.

Overall: 5/5


*clears throat* Um … this is an excellent book. You may want to procure a copy and devour it. I enjoyed the plot, characters, and setting thoroughly. I’d recommend it to any lover of classics, adventure, romance, or simply good books.

~Kellyn Roth~

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Have you read this book? If so, did you enjoy it? If not, will you read it now? Do you enjoy classics? If so, what are some of your favorites? If not, have you even tried classics? ‘Cause maybe you’d enjoy them … who knows? 😉

Also … I am out of town. *nods*

Emily of Deep Valley by Maud Hart Lovelace

Title: Emily of Deep Valley

Author: Maud Hart Lovelace

Series: Deep Valley, #2 (can definitely be read as a stand-alone, though)

Genre: Historical/Classic Romance/Literary Fiction

Age-Range: 12+ (upper middle grade/young adult/adult)

Era: 1910s (later Edwardian)

Setting: Deep Valley, Minnesota

Publisher: Harper Trophy (first published 1950)

Source: library/now own

Rating: 5/5 stars

Content: 1/5. I can’t think of anything in this story that isn’t okay for all ages. I guess there’s the usual falling in love and a couple kisses (absolutely no details), but … yeah, it’s really just sweet and adorable. 🙂

Emily of Deep Valley by Maud Hart Lovelace


Emily Webster, an orphan living with her grandfather, is not like the other girls her age in Deep Valley, Minnesota. The gulf between Emily and her classmates widens even more when they graduate from Deep Valley High School in 1912. Emily longs to go off to college with everyone else, but she can’t leave her grandfather.

Emily resigns herself to facing a lost winter, but soon decides to stop feeling sorry for herself. And with a new program of study, a growing interest in the Syrian community, and a handsome new teacher at the high school to fill her days, Emily gains more than she ever dreamed.

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Wow. Just wow.

I heard that there was more to the Betsy-Tacy series a couple years back … that Betsy’s Wedding wasn’t the last one. Lovelace had written several stories about minor characters from the Betsy-Tacy series … and one about a completely new character, Emily Webster.

I had to read it.

A library trip later, I read it through in one sitting.

There is something about this book that sets it apart from even the later Betsy-Tacy books. Perhaps it has something to do with Emily, quiet, sensible, two-feet-on-the-ground Emily. Perhaps it has something to do with the message of the story … how Emily overcame her boredom, her loneliness, and her feeling of uselessness by serving others, by making things happen.

It could easily be called ‘The Blooming of Emily Webster’ if that title didn’t sound just a bit too cliché for such a perfect, adorable book. 🙂

Lets start out with Emily. She’s an awesome protagonist. At the beginning, she’s sad and just a bit pouty over the loss of her schoolmates, the feeling of uselessness as she no-longer has a place to go every day with school over.

She was never a big part of the school social circle. She was always the outcast, the girl who didn’t have a mother and father and a modern, pretty house to host friends in, but she still misses the activity, the ability to slip into the crowd and get lost in everyone else’s merriment.

Now Emily must make her own way in the world as a young woman. She thinks the only way to do that would be to go through college … but, of course, she’s wrong, because no woman in a Maud Hart Lovelace novel needs anything – not even college – to get anything done if she really sets her mind to it.

So Emily sets to work.

Another fun part of this story was Jed. Wow. The first time I read this, I didn’t see that one coming. Well, the fun thing about Lovelace’s books is that you never see the romance before it actually happens … and most the time, you have no idea who the character will marry until the end! Yet you never feel like the character is making too sudden decisions or anything like that! I wish I could write like that. 🙂

Overall, this is a must-read for … anyone. Let’s just leave it at that. 😛

~Kellyn Roth

Persuasion by Jane Austen

Title: Persuasion

Author: Jane Austen

Genre: Classic Romance

Age-Range: 14+ (young adult/adult)

Era: early 1800s (Regency era)

Setting: England ~ mostly Bath

Source: free on Kindle ~ probably will buy hardbound copy soon!

Rating: 5/5 stars

Content: 1/5. Okay for basically all ages, though the reading level is higher than most tweens can handle in my personal opinion.

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