Thursday, January 26, 2017

Book Review: "Not Just Jane: Rediscovering Seven Amazing Women Who Transformed British Literature" by Shelley DeWees

I will say straight off of the bat that I've never been able to get into Jane Austen. I've tried. The horribleness of Mrs Bennett was enough to "nope" me out of there pretty quick. I always tell myself I should try again but then all the books on my TBR are like "choose me! choose me!" and I'm like "yeah, all of you get in the library requests. No Jane Austen right now."

So if, maybe, you find yourself thinking "I want a kinda obscure British woman author who SHOULDN'T be obscure and is kinda in the same time period and what have you" this book would be a great guide.


If you are all amped up on girl power right now, and want to keep the empowering women homefires burning this would be a great way to do so.

Here's some quick bullet points:

-I like Samuel Taylor Coleridge as a poet, but he's basically a turd as a human. When his daughter, Sara Coleridge who is one of the 7 featured ladies, was born while he was away canoodling with his mistress. What was sad about Sara is that she eventually becomes a drug addict like her very distant father.

-Dinah Mulock Craik was my favorite of the women profiled. Honestly, maybe because she was one of the few who still got a happy ending on her terms.

  - This will come as no surprise to people familiar with the time period but it was HARD getting divorces so a lot of times these ladies lived separate from their loutish husbands who still then had rights to their earnings from their publications

-The French Revolution factored into some of these ladies lives WAY more than I thought it would.

-Did you know that some people thought "female hysteria" was caused by the uterus wandering willy nilly thorough the women's body?



If you are or are not a Jane Austen fan, it doesn't matter. If you're looking for some talented ladies who put up with more than their share of garbage to do their chosen profession this will round out your TBR nicely. Recommended!

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