JANE AUSTEN’S FIRST LOVE by Bestselling Author Syrie James, was the first book I had read of this author, but it will most assuredly not be my last.


Fifteen-year-old Jane Austen dreams of three things: doing something useful, writing something worthy, and falling madly in love. When she visits her brother in Kent to celebrate his engagement, she meets wealthy, devilishly handsome Edward Taylor—a fascinating young man who is truly worthy of her affections. Jane knows a match between her and Edward is unlikely, but every moment she spends with him makes her heart race—and he seems to return her interest. Much to her displeasure, however, there is another seeking his attention.

Unsure of her budding relationship, Jane seeks distraction by attempting to correct the pairings of three other prospective couples. But when her matchmaking aspirations do not all turn out as anticipated, Jane discovers the danger of relying on first impressions. The human heart cannot be easily deciphered, nor can it be directed or managed. And if others must be left to their own devices in matters of love and matrimony, can Jane even hope to satisfy her own heart?

Being a lover of Jane Austen, I was curious, and a little dubious, as to how Ms. James would pull off writing as Miss Austen herself, but my doubts were quickly assuaged as Ms. James proved to have the innate ability to seemingly channel the bard herself.

JANE AUSTEN’S FIRST LOVE was a wonderful telling of Jane’s first foray into the social arena.

With her quick wit and robust will, 15-1/2 year old Jane arrives in Kent to meet her brother’s fiancé and family and to celebrate their engagement. Without her overbearing mother (rather reminiscent of Mrs. Bennett in PRIDE AND PREJUDICE), behind for a few days, Jane meets the handsome, charming, and rather worldly, Edward Taylor.

Thrown together for a month of festivities, Jane and Edward Taylor develop a budding romance, all within the strict confines of Georgian society.

[Ms. James] has the unique ability to weave historical facts and fiction seamlessly together to create a beautiful, riveting and delightful tale of romance and first love.

When the festivities are halted due to bad weather, Jane proposes the unmarrieds perform a theatrical. They have chosen A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM and Jane contrives to do a little matchmaking by way of assigning parts, having as much luck as did the illustrious Miss Emma Woodhouse (EMMA).

As with all Austen novels, Ms. James addresses the complexities of family, social class and romantic relationships and creates beautiful well-rounded, multidimensional characters that you hate to say “good-bye” to.

It is obvious that Ms. James did a great deal of research into Miss Austen’s history and has the unique ability to weave historical facts and fiction seamlessly together to create a beautiful, riveting and delightful tale of romance and first love.

If you are a Jane Austen aficionado, like myself, make sure to add all of Ms. James’ works to your Christmas list!

Please support the author by purchasing her book:

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About the Reviewer

Dayna Linton
Dayna Linton - Dayna is the very busy divorced mother of four "exceptional" children. She spends her time running not only this website but is also the founder and President of Rising Phoenix Charitable Foundation ( - a charitable organization which benefits women and children's causes. Dayna is a firm believer in the worth and value of individuals and hopes to help all embrace who they are, nourish themselves and then "pay it forward" by helping others around them to do the same. In her spare time, Dayna enjoys reading anything she can get her hands on and hopes to someday have the time to write a book herself. Dayna is also an avid lover of film and the process that goes into making them. From an early age, she remembers watching the Academy Awards with her mom and cheering on her favorites. When Dayna was little, she just knew she was going to be a big star someday and she would practice in front of a mirror accepting her Oscar. Dayna took four years of drama, which she loved, but found her true passion was dancing. Even today you can catch Dayna dancing just about everywhere she goes, including beaches in the moonlight ...