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Extended Audio Sample Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict: A Novel Audiobook, by Laurie Viera Rigler Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (7,460 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Laurie Viera Rigler Narrator: Orlagh Cassidy Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Jane Austen Addict Series Release Date: August 2007 ISBN: 9781429585651
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After nursing a broken engagement with Jane Austen novels and Absolut, Courtney Stone wakes up and finds herself not in her Los Angeles bedroom, or even in her own body, but inside the bedchamber of a woman in Regency England. Who but an Austen addict like herself could concoct such a fantasy?

Not only is Courtney stuck in another woman’s life, she is forced to pretend she actually is that woman. And despite knowing nothing about her, she manages to fool even the most astute observer. But not even her love of Jane Austen has prepared Courtney for the chamber pots and filthy coaching inns of nineteenth-century England, let alone the realities of being a single woman who must fend off suffocating chaperones, condomless seducers, and marriages of convenience. Enter the enigmatic Mr. Edgeworth, who fills Courtney’s borrowed brain with confusing memories that are clearly not her own.

Try as she might to control her mind and find a way home, Courtney cannot deny that she is becoming this other woman—and being this other woman is not without its advantages, especially in a looking-glass Austen world. And especially with a suitor who may not turn out to be a familiar species of philanderer after all.

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Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 John | 2/15/2014

    " Courtney Stone, a modern-day LA girl and addict of the Austen novels, in the midst of yet another binge following the collapse of her engagement, is suddenly -- at least mentally -- hurled back in time and into the body of Regency spinster Jane Mansfield (geddit?). She soon finds that she's living amid both the best and the worst of the era from which the novels she so adores were born. Is rich youngish widower Charles Edgeworth, whom her bitch mother wants her to marry, really the delight he seems or in fact a heartless seducer who will wed Jane and then oppress her vilely while bedding any passing miss who takes his fancy? Can Charles's sister Mary really be as ingenuous and sweet-natured as she seems? Did Jane, before the "arrival" of Courtney's personality to replace her own, bed or not bed the servant James with whom she obviously had some kind of romantic dalliance on the rebound from an earlier disillusion with Charles? Will Courtney ever be able to return to her 21st-century existence? Has Courtney always really loved Wes, whom she's thought of as merely her best friend? Is Jane's mind inhabiting Courtney's life in the 21st century even as Courtney's life is inhabiting Jane's in the early 19th? Why is Jane's artist father producing Cubist paintings over a century before the style will be invented? This last two questions never get answered, and nor, really, does the very vital one of how it came about that Courtney's mind made the transition through time from one body to the other, from one life to the other. It does emerge that at some stage not long ago Jane visited a fairground fortune-teller and expressed the wish that she could live someone else's life rather than her own; soon after this she fell off her horse and lay unconscious for a while until awakening with Courtney in occupation. This doesn't seem more than a mumbo-jumbo explanation, as if the author ducked the challenge; when Courtney/Jane encounters the fortune-teller again, there's no elucidation, just further mumbo jumbo along Wisdom of Yoda lines . . . or perhaps along Sarah Palin lines: Your problem is your mind [says the fortune-teller:], which, as I said before, does entirely too much thinking. You know, it is a little known fact that thinking is entirely overrated. The world would be a much better place if we all did a lot less of it. Much more interesting than this supposedly meaningful anti-intellectualism is Rigler's rationale for how Courtney can experience occasional fleeting memories of events in Jane's life before the mental transition occurred: My mind, my very identity, is tied up in all the memories of the life I called my own, my life as Courtney Stone. Yet that bundle of memories, that thing I call my self, is residing in Jane's body. And that body has a physical brain of its own. And that brain has memories imprinted on it -- visual, experiential, sensory memories. Perhaps the more I become used to living in Jane's body and using her brain, the more I am starting to access her memories. I wish there'd been lots more of this sort of thought-provoking stuff in Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict rather than what came to seem, at least to me, interminable gigglish scenes in which Courtney comes close to giving herself away or being thought mad as she voices liberated 21st-century attitudes into a Jane Austen world, or in which she speculates what might might happen here if she simply banged whichever hunky male has this time caught her fancy rather than merely flirting with him. In this context, the primary frustration is when Courtney/Jane actually runs into Jane Austen (who was publishing her novels anonymously) and, rather than having a conversation with her that might, say, expand our understanding of the background to the novels, blows the encounter by fangirlishly babbling about the movie adaptations -- references which, of course, mean absolutely nothing to Austen. If the scene were funny this might be an excuse for wasting the opportunity; as it is, this seems like just yet another ducked challenge. All in all, the book's moderately entertaining, in the sense that I did actually get to the end of it. But its lack of ambition, its inability to convey (at least to me) any sense of place and the fact that its central situation doesn't seem properly thought through -- all these meant I found it difficult to think of this as anything more than a bit of moderately well written fluff. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jennifer Donner | 2/13/2014

    " This was a pretty interesting book but I didn't care for the ending. I felt it didn't really explain anything. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lauren | 2/10/2014

    " Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Veira Rigler was one of the most intriguing books I have ever read. This book combines the best elements from Jane Austen's classic novels with fresh new characters, making this book so enticing, one can hardly put it down. Rigler exposes hard truths about life in the early 19th centuries that other books exclude, instead romanticizing the difficult lifes that many led during this time period. Although the end is both joyous and heartbreaking simultaneously, the book is worth reading. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 B. | 2/5/2014

    " Horrible...gave it my usual 75 to 100 pages and just couldn't finish this book. Sorry Ms. Rigler. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Shauna/Doorways | 1/31/2014

    " Not so into this book. I thought the plot was a little weak. The characters didn't pull me in. The writing itself wasn't great -- there were so many maze-like sentences! Maybe it's just me, but I feel like a subject, predicate, and a point are all still required! So, I say cross it off the to-read list. It wasn't worth my time. I kept reading to know how it all ended up... and then it didn't really tell you. Bummer. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Angie Taylor | 1/29/2014

    " This was the perfect read to pick and put down when needed. It's about a 21st century Jane Austen addict who wakes one morning to find herself Austen time. It was a fun little read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jess | 1/25/2014

    " This was entertaining to listen to while I cooked and puttered around the house, but the story never quite hooked me. I mostly liked the concept of a modern woman stuck in the life of a Regency era woman, but I never quite believed the romance or the characters. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lizzie | 1/24/2014

    " Slim pickings in the audiobook dept. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shaun | 1/20/2014

    " I thought that this was a really good read, I can see why it was a favorite. I was just confused as to who is she really? Is she Jane or Courtney? It did make me appreciate cleanliness and hygiene! Flushing toilets and the ability to shower! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Erin | 1/1/2014

    " Not great lit but a quirky diversion. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Briana Warman-Adams | 12/24/2013

    " The only thing worse than a Jane Austen book is a book about a Jane Austen fan. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cara | 12/22/2013

    " I liked this one better than the sequel. I definitely recommend reading them in order - it makes much more sense. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Elisabeth | 12/11/2013

    " I'm not going to lie, I wanted this to be good, but it was pretty dumb. There was a similar BBC movie that was released to DVD (relatively) recently called Lost in Austen. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Teresa | 12/6/2013

    " Interesting premiss. Gives us an insight into what a non-romantized life in JA's era might have been like. i.e. no a/c, no bathrooms, no freedoms for women, etc. Ending SUCKED but other than that a good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Busylizzy111 | 11/23/2013

    " That was a nice story with a disappointing ending. Not sure if/when I read the second book... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lorna | 10/12/2013

    " Two stars may be generous "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Taunya | 8/25/2013

    " This book was a little slow, but was worth the read. I wanted more from the ending. Oh well. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ljc | 7/12/2013

    " I didn't think it was as horrible as a lot of reviews I saw - but I did skim over a lot of her musings and internal conflict conversations. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lesley | 7/11/2013

    " I am not really a big Jane Austen fan... her books are good but so are a lot of books. Georgette Heyers wrote some great Regency Era stories and I enjoy re-reading them! This book involves a modern woman waking up in the Austen era. Interesting concept, story was ok. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joel Wyrick | 12/16/2012

    " Excellent story line. The characters were well developed and relatable. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Heather | 10/17/2012

    " The author took a good idea and flushed it down the toilet. Poorly thought out and lacking logic and empathetic characters. Bleh. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jen | 8/15/2012

    " Not as good as I wanted it to be and the end is a huge disappointment. Skip this and just read Pride and Prejudice for the 35th time and you'll be much happier. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paula Welander | 4/28/2012

    " Picked this book up on a whim and ended up really liking it. Funny, especially if you have read tons of Jane Austen as I have. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Maria | 4/8/2012

    " I really loved this book. I picked it up and couldn't put it down! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Charlotte Wiebe | 2/13/2012

    " A good easy read. Funny time and place book. Story line is a little confusing but her second book should help that out. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Hieka | 5/10/2011

    " Light funny book. The world of Jane Austin is interwined with todays world, or vice versa depending on how you look at it.

    Good beach read if you like Jane Austin "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Phebe | 5/2/2011

    " This was very light, cute reading about time travel into Jane Austn's time...total mind candy "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Sara | 4/29/2011

    " Pretty crappy to be honest. I couldn't get past the 25th page and I'm an avid reader. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nicole | 4/14/2011

    " Completely overturned my expectations! I'm such a sentimental person. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Austin | 4/4/2011

    " I've seen all of the criticisms of the book, but I loved it as a light chick lit novel. I liked it well enough that I promptly put my name on the list for its sequel, which I will also rate highly. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Angela | 4/3/2011

    " By the time the main character figured out how selfish she is, I already hated her. There weren't enough pages left in the book to redeem her. Interesting premise for the story, but could've been so much better. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Megan | 4/1/2011

    " Definetly not my favorite Jane Austen Fiction. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Suzie | 3/29/2011

    " Fun book to read by the side of the pool while on vacation. "

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About the Author
Author Laurie Viera Rigler

Laurie Viera Rigler is a freelance book editor who teaches writing workshops, including classes at Vromans, Southern California’s oldest and largest independent bookstore. Laurie lives in Los Angeles and is a member of the Jane Austen Society of North America.

About the Narrator

Orlagh Cassidy is an udiobook narrator who has twice won the prestigious Audie Award for best narration, as well as fifteen AudioFile Earphones Awards. She is a graduate of SUNY at Purchase and a recipient of the Princess Grace Foundation Scholarship. She has been seen on and off Broadway and in films, including Definitely Maybe and Calling It Quits. Her television credits include roles in Law & Order and Sex and the City and as Doris Wolfe on Guiding Light. She has done voice work for commercials in which she is probably best known for her role as the mom in the “BFF Jill” spots for AT&T.