Monday, July 12, 2010

Book Review: The Echoes of Love (Jane Austen in 21st century) by Rosie Rushton

"Anna had noticed Felix the moment she arrived: for one thing, he was the only black guy in the crowded marquee that had been erected on one of the paddocks at the Musgrove's farm; and for another, he was seriously hot." (pg.40)

Published: February 26th, 2010 by Piccadilly Press Ltd
Description (the back cover of the book):
What would happen if Jane Austen's PERSUASION was set in the twenty-first century?

Anna Eliot adored the gorgeous Felix Wentworth, but still called an end to their relationship. As time passes, Anna wonders if strict parents, interfering friends and misplaced loyalties had more to do with it than she wants to admit...
Now he's back from fighting in Afganistan and Anna longs to rekindle their relationship- but will he give her a second chance? Or will the echoes of the past prove too difficult to overcome?
An ecovative tale of the perils of listening to others, instead of your own heart.

My thoughts:
This is the fourth 'Jane Austen in 21st century' novel by Rosie Rushton I read. The one that I still want to read is Sense&Sensibility of 21st century. Even though I have enjoyed the previous titles read, this one became my favorite while I was reading the first couple of chapters of this novel.

Anna Eliot is a daugter of Walter Eliot, a famous TV show host who has recently been on the media because of this outbursts at wrong occasions. Walter is is difficult economical position; he has lost his job and he just keeps spending money without understanding that he is really broke. Anna's older sister Gaby, a favorite of her father, wants to be a model and is not ready to change the lifestyle she is used to. Anna's little sister, Mallory, isn't ready for the change either. After the death of their mother, the middle child Anna, the sensible and responsible one, has taken the role of the mother; she is the one trying to make her father understand that they are broke. There is also Marina, Anna's godmother, who has promised to Anna's mother to take care of the family.

Since Walter is on bad economical situation, he has to give his house for rent and move to live at a different city for a while. Ruth and Joseph Croft, a couple who has been traveling the world for the past years, rent the house. When Anna understand's who Ruth and Joseph are, leaving her home gets harder. When Ruth starts to talk about the homecoming of his nephew, Felix, Anna understands that she has to stick to the surroundings to meet Felix... again.

Anna and Felix. It was love at the first sight. Felix, a gorgeous, tall guy Anna meets at the party steals her heart. After meeting Felix, nothing is the same. Anna feels like only with Felix, she can be herself. But nothing goes as Anna wishes for and sooner of later, she notices that she is in a situation where she has to choose between Felix and the loyalty to her family. Anna's persuasive father and god mother force Anna do a decision she will regret for her whole life.

Now Felix is back. He has been serving at Afganistan; he is a military hero now. When Anna sees Felix again all the feelings get back to the surface. But Felix acts like he does not even notice Anna. Can Felix forgive Anna, or will Anna be watching Felix falling love with another girl? 

'Echoes of Love' is the modern re-telling of Jane Austen's classic novel Persuasion. You all probably already know that I love Jane Austen and everything related to her. So when I for the first time heard about the Jane Austen 21st century novels written by Rosie Rushton, I was hyped. I bought the previous copies I have reviewed from London when I was there on August 2009, and now when I visited the city again on April, I bought this one which was published on February of this year. 

I really liked the character of Anna in this novel. She is strong and independent, but when the loyalty to her family gets into the questions, she acts in a way she later on regrets. I understand why she acts as she does; her father and god mother can be very persuasive. And when Anna's mother, who has died a couple of years earlier, is brought into the discussion, she thinks that the only thing she can do is to do as her father and godmother say. But even after her decision, she does not stop thinking about Felix.

Felix. A gorgeous, hot, black guy; a guy totally from a different world with Anna. I really liked the fact that Rushton's Wentworth is a black guy. It brings a totally new twist into the story. The character of Felix is almost as gorgeous as Austen's captain Wentworth. You can personally find our why; I don't want to spoil the best parts of the novel. ;)

I really like Rushton's style of writing; she engages the reader and the book is hard to put down. I think the reason why I liked this one the most of the books I've read by Rushton is the fact that I, in a way, was able to identify with Anna. When Felix leaves, she only can think of him and she thinks that she cannot continue her life without him. I also have been in a situation when I have had to left when I was in a relationship with someone; it is two years from that but I still sometimes feel that leaving was the worst decision I've ever made.

'Jane Austen in 21st Century' novels are great for young readers who want to get familiar with Jane Austen, but who do not want to read the original pieces. (You should read them, there is nothing that can be compared to them.) And of course, all the lovers of Jane Austen will love these 21st century remakes with new twists to the old story we love so much. 


  1. Wow, this is new, and it sounds very fun to read! Great review. Thanks for sharing! I am glad Persuasion is getting some attention.

  2. Thanks Irena. What I am really pissed about is the fact that Rosie Rushton isn't going to write a 21st century version of Mansfield Park. Of course, the whole cousin concept would not work, but it could be like best friends or something like that. I would have really liked to read a 21st century version of Mansfield Park.
    But this one was throughly good, I still have the S&S 21st century one to read, I think I might order it online or something like that...


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