Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Review: Searching for Captain Wentworth by Jane Odiwe


It is often expressed that Jane Austen was quite the observer of human nature and folly, and her characters are portrayals of people she has met or observed. What if her fodder for Persuasion came from her neighbors while living in Bath as well as her own relationships? It is not uncommon for authors to leave parts of themselves in their novels. In Searching for Captain Wentworth, Jane Odiwe give readers a glimpse into Austen’s life that makes one wonder if these similarities are snapshots of the real Jane. Were Anne Elliot’s despondent feelings regarding leaving Kellynch Hall a sketch of Austen’s feeling upon having to give up Stevenson? Was Captain Wentworth inspired by Jane’s love that got away? Embark on a journey highlighting a uniquely told love story connecting two eras.

After receiving an antique rosewood box and a key to her family place in Bath from her Great Aunt Elizabeth, and with nothing holding her back, Sophie Elliot decides to take a holiday. She can think of no better place for an Austen lover to begin writing her first novel than living next door to where Jane and Cassandra Austen resided.

Upon arriving at Sydney Place, Sophie feels as if she is in a time warp. The flat bespeaks a much simpler time with its cheval mirrors, heavy, damask curtains, gilt candlesticks, and a dressing table draped with muslin and ribbon. Between the Regency feel of the flat and the white kid glove, reminiscent of Captain Wentworth, that was dropped by her mysterious neighbor Josh Strafford, Sophie decides it’s time to seek the adventure her ancestors are calling her to embrace.

On this journey, Sophie treasures her friendship with the Miss Austens, and struggles with Society’s strictures that stifle women’s independence. In the end, Sophie finds herself torn between her feelings for Lieutenant Charles Austen, Jane’s younger brother, and those for her neighbor, Josh Strafford. Can one truly be in love with two different people from two different centuries? Will Sophie find her Captain Wentworth?

I am always a little skeptical at the outset of reading a time-travel novel. My mind is filled with questions: How is the author going to deliver on the premise? Is it going to be well executed and believable or far-fetched, prohibiting my disbelief from being suspended? Ms. Odiwe seamlessly melds together the two periods. Whether the descriptions were Regency or present-day Bath, I was easily transported to those scenes alongside Sophie. I quite love it when a novel takes me places I dream of visiting free of charge.

Searching for Captain Wentworth is an enchanting novel that gives readers a glimpse of what Jane Austen’s life possibly was like, Regency Bath and the hope that maybe our very own Captain Wentworth is out there somewhere if we just embrace the journey to find him. With so much to offer, Searching for Captain Wentworth is sure to capture the heart of any Janeite, Captain Wentworth fangirl, or anglophile.


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*Review copy provided by author

19 comments:

  1. Great review, Jakki. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
    That´s exactly how I´m feeling now reading it. I´m at 53% my kindle tells me (beginning chapter 22) and am so eager to know how everything continues. And I can definitly say, that I have never read an Austenesque novel with this kind of twist yet. Such a great idea!

    I´m soo looking forward to finding ou how it ends (I admit to sometimes skipping pages to the end of a novel, if can´t bear not to know who she/he ends up with - but I don´t do that with my kindle...so...is she going to...or isn´t she...? Argh..need to go read more ;) )

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    1. LOL, Katrin! I am guilty of the same thing. Though it is much more difficult to skip ahead on the Kindle to discover how it ends. Sometimes, I get frustrated when reading on my Kindle that it isn't as easy to do as a with a paperback. One more reason I prefer a paperback to my Kindle! ;)

      So glad you are enjoying it! Looking forward to hearing your thoughts once you finish! :)

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  2. Thank you so much for this wonderful review, Jakki, I'm thrilled! And, Katrin, I hope the rest lives up t your expectations!

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    1. It was truly my pleasure reading Capt. Wentworth! Thank *you* for writing a great novel! :)

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  3. You can use 'go to' on a kindle to skip ahead. I am bad for skipping ahead which is one reason I prefer kindle to paperback, it's not so easy to do. Another main reason for preferring kindle is you can turn the page while drinking a cuppa :-)

    I have this book waiting for me on the kindle, sounds like I have a treat in store!

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    1. I agree, Ceri, that it is much easier to read, turn pages & drink a cuppa with the Kindle. Hope you enjoy SFCW! :)

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  4. I want time to read! Let's all pick a week to buy lottery tickets. If we win the big bucks, we commit to planning a beach read weekend. I've got two of Jane's books on my phone - and this one is at the top of my list.

    Of course, Jakki, it would be REALLY tough for you breastfeeding on the beach. Sand gets everywhere as it is!

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    1. Lol, Angie! Yeah, I doubt the baby will enjoy a mouthful of sand or sunscreen! ;) I hope you find time to read soon! I have a feeling I will be in your boat here in a few weeks once this turkey is done!

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    2. Jakki! Lol! I read so much while breast feeding! Make sure your book is within reach every time you sit down to feed her! ;)

      Great review! I'm going to have to put this one on my TBR list. Thanks!

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    3. Ooh, good call, Candy! I will make sure my book is with my water bottle, hopefully I won't forget it. If so, at least the kids are older & can grab it for me. ;) Enjoy SFCW!

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  5. I am so glad you enjoyed this one. I won it as a prize and look forward to reading it. Zany time travel stuff doesn't phase me at all and I love the idea of seeing Jane Austen's Bath since I won't get to see it anytime soon outside of books and TV specials.

    Thanks for the review thoughts.

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    1. Hi Sophia Rose! Thanks for stopping by! :) What a great prize to win! I hope you enjoy SFCW! Oh, to someday be able to go to Bath and actually walk through so many famous places! :) Someday! ;)

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  6. I'm glad to see you loved this one as much as I did!

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    1. Oh, I did, Anna! I enjoy Jane Odiwe's work! I wonder what she will come up with next? :) Thanks so much for stopping by! :)

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  7. I have this ebook and I hope to read it pretty soon - it looks soooo good. I'm usually not one to skip ahead when I read but I have a couple times. Do kindles read out loud to you Jakki? That way you can have both hands for feeding baby Monica Meredith Angie Leatherberry and still have your story. ;)

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    1. Ha! You never cease to make me laugh, Monica! =) I know Jennifer Becton's stories have the capability to read to you, but idk how to do that, but I much prefer reading to listening. Just listened to Mr. D's Refuge on Audible. Pear Hewitt did a great job, but I still would much rather be reading.
      Though I do need to start little Monica Meredith Angie Leatherberry on her path to loving Austen & a British accent as soon as I can! :D

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  8. Great review! I so enjoyed this book, and am sure that other readers will, too!

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  9. WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANT. I adore Wentworth.

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