If you can’t describe your “type” without mentioning a character from “Pride and Prejudice,” this book’s for you.
In Laurie Viera Rigler’s “Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict,” Jane Mansfield leaves the comfort of life in 19th century England and unexpectedly wakes up in the body of Courtney Stone, who lives in Los Angeles in 2009.
The result? A painful culture shock.
Jane can’t understand why people keep calling her “Courtney.”
Plus, her Regency England upbringing isn’t too helpful when it comes tasks like operating a cell phone, dealing with California traffic and understanding complicated undergarments.
Just when Jane is convinced her life couldn’t be any more different from Courtney’s, she finds a common link:
Both women are Jane Austen addicts.
Sure, Courtney’s books look a little different. And Jane doesn’t quite comprehend the people who keep performing “Pride and Prejudice” inside a little glass box — also known as a TV.
Nonetheless, the Austen connection makes Jane’s unexpected time travel a little less daunting — maybe even exciting.
“I do not know how I have come to be in this time, in this place, in this body,” Jane says. “But I do know that any place where there are six novels by the author of ‘Pride and Prejudice’ must be a very special sort of heaven.”
“Rude Awakenings” is a sequel to Rigler’s “Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict,” which focuses on the same characters, but a reverse time travel scenario:
Modern day Courtney Stone wakes up in Jane Mansfield’s body in 19th century England.
Both books are quick, humorous reads that offer subtle social commentary.
And Rigler, a life member of the Jane Austen Society of North America, is in her element.
Popular culture’s obsession with Austen has come in waves during recent years, but Rigler is clearly here for the long haul.
Visit her official Web site, Jane Austen Addict, and you’ll find Austen-centered quizzes and research. There’s also a list of signs you might be suffering from Austen addiction.
(A sample: “Your house is on fire. You leave family photos and computer behind and grab your Jane Austen action figure, Mrs. Darcy T-shirt and map of Georgian Bath.”)
Rigler even posts Twitter versions of Austen’s work. On her site, she links to a version of “Pride and Prejudice” told entirely through Facebook status updates.
It’s a strange mixture of old and new, a convergence of technology and literary tradition.
One that makes it a little easier for an unexpected visitor from 1813 to fit in.
ContactSonya Sorichat 706-571-8516.