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Archive for October, 2012

Inspired by Jane Austen’s Persuasion, Searching for Captain Wentworth is set in Bath and Lyme

Continuing my audio excerpts of my new book which has been inspired by Jane Austen’s novel Persuasion. Here’s Chapter Four of Searching for Captain Wentworth – I hope you enjoy it! If you’d like to listen to the first three chapters, please click here!


I’ve had a lovely review from Laura Gerold this week for Searching for Captain Wentworth.

Is there a literary hero that shines brighter than Mr. Darcy of Pride and Prejudice? To me, the answer is yes – Captain Wentworth is to me the sexiest Austen hero and among my favorite literary romantic leads. Besides the fact that Captain Wentworth is a navy man that has made his fame and fortune at sea, he is also a man with strong feelings and passion. Who can forget his letter to Anne Elliot at the end of Persuasion where he admits to never forgetting her and harboring a love for her for eight years after her rejection of him? That letter is the most romantic letter in the history of literature!


In Searching for Captain Wentworth, one of my favorite Austen Authors, Jane Odiwe combines many of my favorite elements; romance, Jane Austen, Bath, time travel, and Persuasion to create a very romantic tale of love across the spans of time. Sophie Elliot is taking time in Bath to get over her cheating boyfriend and to see if she can finally write the novel she has always dreamed of writing. Her Great-aunt has given her the keys to the family’s old home in Bath to use during her stay. Part of the home has been split up for others to live in including her attractive new neighbor, Josh Strafford. 

Sophie soon discovers that through the use of a mysterious glove, she is able to travel back through time to Regency Bath and live the life of her ancestor and namesake Sophia Elliot. Sophia is friends with her neighbors, Cassandra and Jane Austen. The Austen’s brother, Charles, is on leave from the navy and Sophia soon finds herself falling in love with Charles. Will their love last and how will they make it work through space and time? You will need to read this novel to find out for yourself!

I love Odiwe’s characterizations in this novel. Jane was a lively young woman in the spirit of Elizabeth Bennet and I could easily see her writing her witty novels. Jane had a secret passion of her own, which was intriguing to read about. I loved how Sophia’s Elliot family strongly mirrored the Elliots from Persuasion with herself as Anne and Charles as Captain Wentworth. It was a great story and oh so romantic. I liked the surprise ending. I didn’t see it coming and it was the perfect ending.

A Gateway into Sydney Gardens, Bath

I’m absolutely thrilled to tell you my exciting news that I’m back with Austen Authors! I shall be blogging with my fellow authors from today – I’d love to see you there!

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Emma and Elton by Alexa Adams
Alexa Adams has a new Jane Austen inspired tale on her blog which she is posting in eight parts. Here’s Part One – do follow the links for the parts already posted. Her lovely story concludes on the 31st, – Alexa will then offer it for a free Kindle download!
I’m enjoying it very much – such a wonderful treat to be able to get it on Kindle too! 

Second Glances
I know Alexa is preparing the sequel to her novel, First Impressions, which will be available soon! Isn’t that a gorgeous cover?!

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The Heron who posed so obligingly!
A view of Sydney Place from Sydney Gardens

Yesterday I was in Sydney Gardens and thought you might like to see the scenery that I describe in Searching for Captain Wentworth. It’s particularly relevant to the chapter that I’ve posted below. I hope you enjoy both the words and pictures! I was amazed by this heron who stopped by the edge of the canal to pose for me! I often see seagulls but I’ve never seen a heron here before and he was so tame

A Temple in Sydney Gardens, Bath

Audio Excerpt of Searching for Captain Wentworth Chapter Three ©Jane Odiwe

A Detail from a stone bridge in Sydney Gardens, Bath
Autumnal colour in Sydney Gardens, Bath

If you’ve missed Chapter One and Two CLICK HERE

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This review is from Lori Hedgpeth of Psychotic State Blog – I’m thrilled that Searching for Captain Wentworth could turn out to be Lori’s favourite book of mine! I must admit, I have a very soft spot for it too.

The City of Bath

  
My Thoughts on Searching for Captain Wentworth

Jane Odiwe has been a favorite Jane Austen-inspired author of mine for some time and she earns a special distinction due to her Lydia Bennet’s Story being the first Austen sequel/prequel that I read and starting me down the road of various Austen variations.  I loved Lydia Bennet’s Story, as well as her other sequels/reimaginings Mr. Darcy’s Secret and Willoughy’s Return in which she vividly brought beloved Jane’s original characters back to life.  Searching for Captain Wentworth is different from Ms. Odiwe’s previous work because while it does center on one of beloved Jane’s work (this time, Persuasion), it’s a modern take with time travel back to the Regency period of Jane Austen.  And oh yes, beloved Jane herself plays a very central role.

I loved how Ms. Odiwe took Jane Austen’s actual history of the time she spent in Bath and wove a wonderfully romantic tale of how Persuasion was conceived and birthed.  Jane is presented here as a feisty and charming woman, a loyal sister.  And yes, a writer at heart. In addition to Jane, Cassandra Austen and Charles Austen were both represented and it was a delight to have them included as both were vital in Jane’s life. 

I loved our heroine, Sophie, an aspiring writer who desperately wants to follow in Jane Austen’s footsteps.  She was utterly loveable and it was easy to root for her. 

The set up for the story is seamless and I was entranced by both Sophie’s present day conflicts and historical issues.  I adored both the modern day story as well as the story unfolding in Regency Bath.  When I was reading about Regency Bath, I didn’t want it to end and by the same token, present day Bath held me captivated.  I am a big fan of time travel pieces and never before have I experienced equal passion for both eras being represented.  It created a torn feeling in me as I fell in love with both Charles and Josh, Charles’ present day counterpart.  Both men have standout qualities, both are incredible fantasy literature men so who should Sophie choose?   

Lyme Bay



Ms. Odiwe’s knowledge of artwork and art history shines through solidly in the passages with Josh at work in the museum and as someone with very limited knowledge on art and art history, I was fascinated with it.  I also appreciated Ms. Odiwe’s insider knowledge of Bath.  Austen fans will recognize and rejoice over the Pump Rooms, Lyme Regis and assembly rooms.  The city comes alive in glorious detail and for an Austen addict and Anglophile like myself, only furthers to whet my appetite to walk in Jane Austen’s footsteps myself. 

I must give Searching for Captain Wentworth my highest recommendation. Reading it was equivalent to enjoying one of Jane Austen’s own works – – romantic, clever, entertaining and ultimately satisfying.  Ms. Odiwe’s affection for Jane Austen allows the reader to escape into a land in which disbelief is suspended and all things are possible and isn’t that what a good book is supposed to do? 

Searching for Captain Wentworth may well be my favorite of Ms. Odiwe’s novels.  Every character is so real, so vivid, every scene so perfectly handled I desperately wanted to live within the pages of this achingly romantic book for more than the few short days I did.

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I’m so thrilled to have received another wonderful review for my new novel – thank you Lois and Stephanie Moore of Layered Pages Blog!

Searching For Caption Wentworth by Jane Odiwe

I’ve just finished a really good book that I was asked to review: Searching For Captain Wentworth by Jane Odiwe. I have to say, I felt very lucky to have been given the opportunity to read the book. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The baseline of the story revolves around a young woman named Sophie Elliot who is adrift in life and in her career and hoping to restart her writing career by staying in Bath, England in the townhome owned by her family. She is fascinated with Jane Austen and when she learns that the townhome is next door do the one that the Austen’s lived in when they were staying in Bath, her decision is finalized.
What follows is an interesting journey backwards and forwards through time as Sophie mysteriously passes back into time in the body of her cousin who is living next door to the Austen’s and has befriended the young Austen ladies. Sophie becomes more and more entwined with the story of her cousin and her friendship with Jane and her sister – and brother, Charles.
In modern times, she befriends her neighbor, Josh Strafford, who happens to be working on an exhibit about Regency Bath, including displays on the Austen’s. As Sophie bounces back and forth between time, she begins to have feelings for both Josh and Charles, which she fears will lead her to heartbreak on both fronts.
The story is cleverly woven between the past and present and quickly draws you into both times. You hope that Sophie finds love with Charles Austen in the past AND with Josh Strafford in the present. You wonder how the events in the past have shaped the current and what changes may occur based on Sophie’s actions in the past. Will she affect the future? What will happen with Charles? What does Josh feel about her? Is she just a friend or more to him?
Odiwe does an excellent job of portraying Regency England and the customs and challenges young women of that era faced. I was enchanted by her portrayal of Jane Austen as a spunky, creative young woman bound by duty and honor – and most women of that age were. I’ve visited Bath before and the descriptions she used in the book were true to my memories and took me back to the visits, wandering the streets and walking through the Pump Room.
She handles the time-travel relatively well, and I think, does a good job of portraying Sophie as someone who tries to sort out whether what is happening is a dream or if it is real – and which reality is really real?
I would most definitely suggest you read the book, even if you are not a Jane Austen fan, you’ll enjoy the story line and be enchanted by the characters.
Lois Houston
Review Team Member

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It is almost impossible to describe the feeling of elation I get when a book gets a lovely review and I am so thrilled with this one from Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric Blog

 

Persuasion

 

‘I think every woman has that within her which would set her free, if only she could act on her inner feelings and be true to herself.’

(from Searching for Captain Wentworth, page 272)

Have you ever wished you could meet a long-dead favorite author and maybe even see firsthand the people and events that inspired your favorite novel?  In Searching for Captain Wentworth, Jane Odiwe’s heroine, Sophie Elliot, gets the opportunity to meet and even befriend Jane Austen through her ancestor, Sophia.

Needing time away to mend her broken heart and determined to begin the novel she’s always wanted to write, Sophie heads to her great-aunt’s house in Bath, which has been in the family for generations.  When she observes her dashing and mysterious downstairs neighbor, Josh, drop an old glove, Sophie has good intentions of returning it to him.  But this is no ordinary glove; Sophie soon determines that it allows her to travel back to 1802 and see Regency Bath through the eyes of Sophia.

 

Review: Searching for Captain Wentworth by Jane Odiwe

October 17, 2012 by Anna (Diary of an Eccentric)

‘I think every woman has that within her which would set her free, if only she could act on her inner feelings and be true to herself.’

(from Searching for Captain Wentworth, page 272)

Have you ever wished you could meet a long-dead favorite author and maybe even see firsthand the people and events that inspired your favorite novel?  In Searching for Captain Wentworth, Jane Odiwe’s heroine, Sophie Elliot, gets the opportunity to meet and even befriend Jane Austen through her ancestor, Sophia.

Needing time away to mend her broken heart and determined to begin the novel she’s always wanted to write, Sophie heads to her great-aunt’s house in Bath, which has been in the family for generations.  When she observes her dashing and mysterious downstairs neighbor, Josh, drop an old glove, Sophie has good intentions of returning it to him.  But this is no ordinary glove; Sophie soon determines that it allows her to travel back to 1802 and see Regency Bath through the eyes of Sophia.

Sophie, unsure each time she travels through time when or whether she’ll return to the present day, finds life in the Elliot home unbearable at times.  Sophia’s father seems only to care about the family’s connections, and her arrogant sister, Emma, rests all her hopes on marrying Mr. Glanville and is none too happy about Sophia getting in the way.  If you love Jane Austen’s Persuasion as much as I do, you won’t have any problem identifying the similarities to Anne, Sir Walter, and Elizabeth Elliot.

The one thing that makes life tolerable for Sophie/Sophia is hanging out with the Elliot’s neighbors, the Austens, particularly the sisters Jane and Cassandra.  Sophie is a fan of Austen’s novels and getting to know the real Jane and especially learning whether or not she had a true love make the temptation of the time-traveling glove too hard for her to resist.  And of course, there is Jane’s charming brother, Charles, who is home from the Navy and touches Sophie’s heart in a way no other man ever has.  Meanwhile, in the present, Sophie and Josh navigate a flirtation that is both sweet and awkward…and complicated by the fact that Sophie can’t bring herself to give back the glove.

Given my love for Persuasion, it’s not surprising that I adored Searching for Captain Wentworth.  I certainly could understand how Sophie was torn between two worlds.  Who wouldn’t want to be friends with Jane Austen?  Odiwe’s Jane is as feisty, witty, and funny as we expect her to be.  And because Sophie is so likeable and so real, especially her desire to start a new life and get over her past disappointments in romance and her career, I couldn’t help but root for her to find happiness in whatever century she chose.

But Searching for Captain Wentworth isn’t just about time travel and romance.  Odiwe does a great job showing what women in the Regency era had to endure, from being pushed into marriage and constantly reminded of their familial obligations to a feeling of being trapped by society and how their time was never their own.  It made me feel sorry for Sophia, who wasn’t as lucky as Sophie in being able to escape her world with a magical glove.

Odiwe makes Jane Austen come to life, and her love for Austen and her novels shines on every page.  Searching for Captain Wentworth is a believable imagining of who and what could have inspired Austen to pen Persuasion, and I was impressed by Odiwe’s ability to persuade me to believe the unbelievable.  I turned the last page thinking how much fun it would be to get my hands on that glove, even if I’d never be able to fake my way through a Regency dance despite having watched the movie adaptations of Austen’s novels countless times.  You don’t need to have read Persuasion to enjoy this novel, and since Odiwe is one of my favorite authors in the Austenesque genre, I think it’s the perfect book for a day curled up with a blanket and a hot cup of tea.

 

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As promised, here’s Chapter Two of Searching for Captain Wentworth! I hope you enjoy it.

Our heroine Sophie has arrived in Bath but her Great Aunt Elizabeth’s flat is not quite what she’s been expecting and as she’s about to discover all is not as it first seems…

I am also thrilled to announce the winner of the signed copy of Searching for Captain Wentworth!

Congratulations Miss Lucinda Fountain – look out for an email from me in your inbox – I hope you enjoy the book!

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