Archive for the ‘Searching for Captain Wentworth Reviews’ Category

Over on the League of British Actors Blogspot they are having a fantastic giveaway of books – all in the name of Valentine’s Day! Searching for Captain Wentworth is included and all you have to do is leave your email to be entered for the chance to win a prize. The Giveaway runs until February 20th so you’ve still got time to get involved.

I’ve had a lovely review this week and am thrilled to share it here. I’m always nervous when someone declares that Persuasion is their favourite novel before they review but happily, Elaine Simpson-Long of Random Jottings Blog enjoyed Searching for Captain Wentworth!

Now I know that everyone loves Mr Darcy, or rather Colin Firth in THAT shirt, but my most favourite hero in Jane Austen is Captain Wentworth. I just love him, he is steadfast and true and strikes me as the kind of bloke who could get a taxi in the rain, find a perfect table at a restaurant, never forget your birthday and be able to give you a foot rub, as well as being gorgeous and brilliant at writing stunning love letters.
Sophie Elliot comes to Bath to stay in the family townhouse. She also has an ex-boyfriend who she discovered in bed with another woman, this time one of her best friends.   Yes I know you must be thinking by now that all these women are terrible pickers and yes you would be right, but as one who also had this happen to her, I tell you it comes as a shock that you could be so taken in. After the upset you feel a right idiot I can tell you.
Sophie is trying to write a book but not really getting on with it at all.  She feels there is a presence in the house and catches glimpses of young girls in muslins in the mirror and hears giggles and laughter. The Cwdiscovery of a mysterious glove which, when put on transports her back to the Bath of the time of Jane Austen, results in her meeting both Jane and Cassandra and also their brother, home from the sea on leave, Charles Austen.   She finds herself falling in love with him while back in the modern world, she is immensely attracted to her neighbour Josh, totally gorgeous and sexy.
Sophie’s favourite Jane is Persuasion as is mine so I felt sympathetic to her straight away and empathised with her longing to find her Captain Wentworth.   Not giving anything away when I tell you that she does, that the past and present fuse together perfectly and all ends happily ever after.
I really loved this book and I can be a bit sniffy about books using Jane Austen characters and settings, but this is done in great style and is a delightful read.

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I am having a very exciting week!

Jane Austen, inspired by Cassandra’s portrait by Jane Odiwe

Yesterday, David Sillito, the charming BBC Arts Correspondent interviewed me for a short piece about Jane Austen and my books – if I don’t end up on the cutting room floor you might see a little of me on Monday morning on BBC Breakfast Television. Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice is 200 years old on Monday and there is a special tribute to her being put together – one of many, I believe, over the coming months. Having ‘tasted’ the delights of filming on Masterchef which was aired last year, (sorry about the pun) yesterday’s interview was not quite as scary as I thought it would be – David and the cameraman were absolutely lovely and put me at my ease. The horror was having to run round before they arrived trying to tidy up my very untidy house for my guests. I always forget what a pleasure it is to see a neat house until I’m forced into action – well, now I don’t know myself – it looks a treat!
Anyone who knows me is aware that I can ‘talk for England’ on the subject of Jane Austen and it was lovely to indulge that pleasure!

B.R.A.G. Medallion for Searching for Captain Wentworth

A little later I received a wonderful email from the president of B.R.A.G. Medallion to tell me that I had been selected to receive this fantastic award. Although traditionally published in the past, I decided to go Indie this time with Searching for Captain Wentworth. B.R.A.G. Medallion was set up to recognise the achievements of Indie authors. I am very pleased and proud to be a “B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree”!
If you know someone whose book deserves this kind of notice you can suggest one. Here is a little about them.

From their website:

Who We Are

BRAGMedallion.com is owned and operated by indieBRAG, LLC, a privately held organization that has brought together a large group of readers, both individuals and members of book clubs, located throughout the United States, Canada, and the European Union. The word “indie” refers to self or independently published books, while B.R.A.G. is an acronym for Book Readers Appreciation Group. By their nature, our readers are passionate about all books, but for the purposes of the service we provide, we focus exclusively on the work of self-published authors of print and digital books.

What We Do

Our mission is to recognize quality on the part of authors who self-publish both print and digital books. As such, we are constantly on the lookout for the work of talented men and women who have written indie books across a wide range of genres. Our primary focus is fiction, however, we selectively consider non-fiction books as well.

How We Do It

From the large and rapidly growing library of indie books that are available today, we select those that we believe deserve to be considered. These books are then read and evaluated by members drawn from our reader group. The readers judge the merits of the books based on our proprietary list of criteria. The single most important criterion that we ask our readers to use in judging a book is whether or not they would recommend it to their best friend. Once a book meets this standard of quality, we award it our B.R.A.G. Medallion™, and along with other medallion recipients, it is presented on this website. 

Then, as if it couldn’t get any better I received notice of this lovely review for Searching for Captain Wentworth from Kim of Reflections of a Book Addict

My Persuasion-inspired novel, Searching for Captain Wentworth

What do Jane Austen, time-traveling, “Captain Wentworth”, and a pair of white gloves all have in common?  They’re all major parts of Jane Odiwe’s newest novel Searching for Captain Wentworth, a time-travelling tale that puts us smack dab in the middle of Jane Austen’s life!
Sophie Elliot is in a bit of a slump, to put it mildly.  Her boyfriend has cheated on her, with her best friend, no less.  Totally distraught, she can’t focus on the book she is attempting to write, and is quite depressed indeed.  So, in order to help her recuperate and focus on her writing, her great-aunt gives her the keys to the family townhouse in Bath.  She is shocked to learn that the home is located right next to the former home of none other than Jane Austen herself.  She is not alone, however, as she meets a somewhat mysterious man in the townhouse named Josh Strafford.  After Strafford drops an old glove, Sophie grabs it in order to return it to him.  Instead of simply picking up the glove, something extremely unexpected happens.  She finds herself transplanted into the body of her namesake, in Jane Austen’s time!  She is able to live out her wildest dream as she befriends Austen and experiences life in Regency-era bath.  She soon becomes caught in the dizzying travel between these two eras separated by 200 years.  She learns more about Austen than she ever thought possible.  What will become of Sophie now that this magical transformation has occurred?  What will happen with Josh once she tells him about the magical properties his glove seems to possess?
Right off the bat I was impressed with this book.  I loved how Odiwe was able to make Austen herself personify traits that fit all of her heroines.  She had the wit of Elizabeth, the matchmaking skills of Emma, the lost love like Anne, etc.  I personally like to believe that Jane truly did have traits from all of her heroines.  Knowing her characters so well and then believing they’re little parts of Jane herself makes me feel closer to her work for some reason. (Any one else feel this way??)  Also, can I talk about Charles Austen and Josh for a second?  What wonderfully male creations Odiwe has invented.  They were both written with such superbly gentleman-like characteristics that I couldn’t help but swoon over them.  Overall, Odiwe fleshed out each character quite well, with my opinions on them matching what I thought Odiwe would want to happen, making the story progress that much faster and drawing me in more.
Finally, I have to give Odiwe a lot of credit for her inspiring words throughout the work.  I was touched by several quotes, my personal favorite being:  Time is but a shadow; Too slow, too swift, but for those who love, time does not exist.  How amazing is that?  It’s all too true in our society today.  It makes the maxim “take time to stop and smell the roses” all that more important, as we are constantly bombarded by stimuli and fail to take in the importance of the people and places around us.  Between the exquisitely written story and  intriguing characters, I was hooked from cover to cover.  Even if time travelling books aren’t normally your style, I’d suggest that you still give this a try.  After all, haven’t we all wanted to be Jane’s best friend?
5 out of 5 Stars

Lastly, but by no means least, this lovely week will be topped off on Friday by a visit to my local library in High Barnet. I am giving a talk at the Chipping Barnet branch to celebrate the 200 year anniversary of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. My books and paintings will feature so if you’re curious to know more I’d be delighted to see you. It’s free!

Event Details

Author talk: Jane Odiwe

Date: Friday 25 January 2013
Location: Chipping Barnet library
Author Jane Odiwe will be talking about her love of Jane Austen and about her own writing.
Times: 18:30 – 19:30
Cost: Free
This month sees the 200th anniversary of the first publication of ‘Pride and Prejudice’ by Jane Austen. Help us to celebrate this landmark with a talk by Jane Odiwe – a lifelong Austen enthusiast who has written a series of successful books and sequels inspired by Austen’s works.

For more information please contact Chipping Barnet library on 020 8359 4040.

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I’ve just found a couple of lovely reviews for Searching for Captain Wentworth. It always gladdens an author’s heart to find her books are read and enjoyed!

From Leatherbound Reviews, Jakki Leatherberry writes:

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 Steventon? 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 findher 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. 

And from Meditating Mummy:

Persuasion became my obsession in my twenties. It surpassed Pride and Prejudice for I felt that Jane Austen left quite a bit of herself in the story, particularly because it was her last novel. I imagine she did so with all her books. Yet, I feel that Persuasion has a bit more pulse beneath its words. Captain Wentworth would never be Darcy, but he was always right there. With no film to truly satisfy the extension of my love for the book, I went on for many years, reading and re-reading it. Then, Rupert Penry Jones and Sally Hawkins came along in 2007 with a version of the film I loved. I must confess… a part of me has always wanted Jane’s stories to go on, but who would write more? No one could ever match up to her, no matter how hard they tried. I’m not sure If I’m a true ‘Jane-ite,’ I like to think I am. I do however like to search for authors who have written books on Jane Austen or her characters. On one such search, I found Jane Odiwe’s ‘Searching For Captain Wentworth.’
This particular story is sweet, light, slightly predictable at the end, but clearly written out of love for Jane Austen and who can resist that? I love the premise of traveling back from modern-day Bath, to regency era Bath. Who doesn’t want a glimpse of how simple and elegant life was back then? who doesn’t want to see what Austen saw? she seemed to have a sixth sense of the workings of the human heart, and of love. Who could resist the chance to meet Jane Austen herself? It is this concept that drew me to the story. I often wonder what it would be like to travel back in time…Sadly, the lack of good plumbing, body odor and dental floss would make me return to my time after about a day, I would think.  Reading about it, however, is altogether a different thing.
We meet Sophie Elliot when she is in desperate need to get away from all her memories in London.  Her heart is broken, she is not herself and her writing has hit a wall. Sophie hails from a family of strong, opinionated Elliot women. Sophia, her ancestor, is one of three sisters with a self-centered and pretentious father, Sound familiar? it is, the author is drawing parallels to Anne Elliot( in Persuasion) and her family. But, Odiwe adds her own little twist to the story which is slightly more intriguing.  When Sophie receives the keys to her family home in Bath, she discovers the home is perched right next door to Jane Austen’s own home.  Along with it, she finds a handsome neighbor, an old white glove, a tiny box with a portrait and hears gentle whispers and light as a feather, pitter patter on her wooden floors. She is constantly but comfortingly alerted to the fact that she is watched by her ancestors.  Sophia Elliot is closest to Sophie’s heart, naturally. She travels back in time via the glove and inhabits Sophia’s body. It isn’t the usual, strange, modern-day girl going back in modern-day clothing, sort of tale. The time travel aspect is written-in seamlessly, it doesn’t alter much of the story because there is a magical element to it. We are meeting Jane Austen after all. Sophie is transported to the house next door, in regency garb and as Sophia, she finds and befriends Jane Austen, her sister Cassandra and Jane’s interesting brother Charles Austen, all at the same time. It is a delightful, yet captivating glimpse into Jane Austen’s life. It left me wondering if Jane’s true love could have swept her off her feet and how it is that Jane was never bitter about her circumstances?  Instead, she chose to write about love, and enduring love at that. She chose to laugh at society, perhaps the same society that did her wrong through expectations of propriety and perfectly ridiculous rules. This lovely story by Jane Odiwe  serves as a reminder of Austen’s ability to introduce characters that were timeless, strong, sometimes willful, independent and genuine. It is a nice change from books that try to re-capture Austen’s legacy.

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I’ve had a gorgeous review for Searching for Captain Wentworth by Joceline Bury for Jane Austen’s Regency World Magazine.

I love a time travel romance, especially one involving Jane Austen characters, and Jane Odiwe has pulled a great story out of the hat in her latest novel.
The writer Sophie Elliot (whose favourite novel is, unsurprisingly, Persuasion) is invited to use her great-aunt’s Bath town house as a writing retreat and is delighted to find that she is living next door to where the Austen family spent some of their time during their stay in the spa city. She’s initially less than delighted by what appears to be a haunting presence in the house – although that could just be the mice in the wainscot.
But past and present are set to collide when she finds that an antique glove belonging to her present-day neighbour has the power to transport her back in time to the days of the Regency.
Sophie is a beguiling heroine, and her time-slipping adventures involve historical figures alongside fictional creations to great effect.
Odiwe certainly writes a page-turning romantic mystery – her characters are intriguing and her narrative full of surprises and suspense. She blends historical fact and fiction with great style, and the settings are spot on in what the writer describes as her “love letter to Bath.”

Thank you, Joceline Bury – you’ve made my week!

Before I tell you what I got up to last week, here is Chapter Five of Searching for Captain Wentworth!

These costumes reminded me of Anne Elliot and Frederick Wentworth

Last week I visited the new galleries at the V&A where they have revamped the costume collection. I loved the way they’ve arranged costumes with accessories, furniture and paintings of the period. There is a fabulous ballgown exhibition on in the middle of it all with the most mouth-watering display of dresses from the 50s to the present day.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see the Hollywood costume exhibition as it was fully booked but I’m hoping to go very soon.

I hope you enjoyed the photos!

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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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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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