Jane Austen is my new BFF #WOYBS

Welcome to another month of WOYBS!

It’s great to have you join us for another month of our What’s On Your Bookshelf Challenge (WOYBS), #whatsonyourbookshelfchallenge, hosted by my good friends, SueDonnaJo (and me).

What have I been reading?

As we were away I missed last month’s WOYBS but I can tell you I was far too busy with my granddaughter Dottie to have much time to read.

I have now managed to read a few books since my last post, Books Make the world go around, and have also entered the NetGalley world with The Butterfly Collector by Tea Cooper (3 stars). It will be released later this year and was an enjoyable read by an Australian author I haven’t read before. I will go and look for some of her others now.

I really enjoyed The Brewer’s Tale (4 stars) and The Locksmith’s Daughter (5 stars) both by Karen Brooks. I was so glad to finally finish listening to Go Tell the Bees that I am Gone by Diana Gabaldon (3 stars), it just took forever and I don’t really think all that much happened to be honest! And I finished Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park (4 stars) which took me a while to get into but then finished quite abruptly just as I was really getting into it!

Books read Aug-Sept 2022
Books read Aug-Sept 2022

I’m late to the Jane Austen party

I confess to having not read much (if any) of Jane’s work before now, but I’m a huge fan. As our online bookclub has been reading our way through the Jane Austen catalogue it was a no-brainer that I visit the Jane Austen Centre in Bath while I was in England last month.

The Jane Austen Centre Bath

We both have an affinity with Bath as the Mathematician taught there for a year when we were on a Teacher Exchange 30 years ago ( I say we as it was a whole family adventure although technically speaking he was the only one in the family on the actual exchange). So any opportunity to visit the City of Bath and we’re there! It meant an earlier than usual start to the day, dropping Dottie off at Nursery on the way to Bristol, taking the Park and Ride bus into Bristol Temple Meads railway station and then catching a very fast train to Bath. We were there by 10am and despite the morning rain we enjoyed a wander around together before parting ways, he to explore his old haunts and me to the Jane Austen Centre in Gay Street Bath. The rain had eased and the sun was trying to make an appearance so all was right with the world!

I was greeted inside by Edward Ferrars, from Austen’s Sense and Sensibility, and taken on a tour of Jane’s family history, her writing, her time in Bath and learnt lots of interesting things, like how to hold a fan in order to communicate with it! (Aside: My tour guide was actually a young man who came from Brisbane – we clicked as fellow Aussies do but he didn’t let his accent slip at all!)

I tried my hand at writing with a quill and ink, quite splodgy, played Regency style dress-ups with Edward taking my photo with Mr Darcy, bought some gifts in the gift shop and then indulged in a delightful morning tea in the upstairs Regency Tea Room with a view over Bath from my window table.

Language of the fan
Language of the fan – on display at The Jane Austen Centre Bath

I sat there enjoying my Jane Austen blend tea, eating toasted tea cakes with jam while reading my bookclub’s latest, Jane’s Mansfield Park, and communed with her as best I could. It was lovely!

Later, after perusing the shops along the way, I met up with the Mathematician outside the Bath Abbey and we enjoyed a delicious lunch in a laneway cafe in glorious sunshine. We then meandered along the canal and river which we had ridden bikes along a few weeks earlier.

Her own thoughts and reflections were habitually her best companions.

Fanny Price, Mansfield Park – Jane Austen

(Aside: In the TMI basket, I must tell you that the quote above from Mansfield Park, was on the back of the toilet door, quite appropriate given our bookclub’s current reading! I checked and the other toilet had a quote from S&S on its door, so that wouldn’t have done at all!)

What I’m reading at the moment (or trying to)

Jane Austen quote
Love this Jane Austen quote

Will you join us?

If you’re into reading, please feel free to join us, even if it’s just to leave a comment with what you’ve been reading lately. We’ve added a linkup (at the end of my post) so you can add your posts directly there and see what others have posted about for the month as well.

Sue, Donna, Jo and I hope that you will join us in this fun series.

You can read more from my stunning co-hosts here:

Jo from And Anyways…

Sue from Women Living Well After 50

Donna from Retirement Reflections

We’re all in this together, sharing our love of reading 🙂

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
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Happy reading!

Deb xx

All my WOYBS posts can be found here

*BFF = Best Friends Forever

Guidelines for WOYBS:

What: What’s On Your Bookshelf #whatsonyourbookshelfchallenge
When: Third Thursday PM (Northern Hemisphere)/ Third Friday AM (Southern Hemisphere). Next linkup: Friday 21 October 2022
Why: Share a love of reading.
Where: Linkup below, Blog, Blog Comments, Instagram or other Social Media.
Who: This linkup is open to everyone.
How: You can share in the comments, with a blog post, or on other social media of your choice. You can use the hashtag #Whatsonyourbookshelfchallenge


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63 Replies to “Jane Austen is my new BFF #WOYBS”

  1. You’ve been a busy lady reading all those books. I’m about 5 books behind in my goal for Goodreads challenge 2022. I only set mine at 50 because I just wasn’t sure I could do it. I’m determined to make that goal. I have a few books I’m working on finishing and I just need to buckle down.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love everything about this post! The language of the fan–I had no idea. They did leave one off though: [fanning furiously] She’s having a hot flash 🙂

    It took me awhile to get through Go Tell the Bees… too, but I ended up really enjoying it. But you’re right–not a lot happened during most of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am a bit of a fast reader Terri and it’s my favourite wet weather/cold day activity and we’ve had a few this year! The Jane Austen centre was so much fun and very timely too. Thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. How lovely Deb that you managed to visit the Jane Austen Centre. A wonderful experience for you and you really looked the part! I’ve read some books on your list and enjoyed all of Sandie Docker’s books. They are easy to read. You’ve had a fabulous holiday and packed so much into your visit – unlike your suitcase where you get a 5 star rating from me for only taking on board luggage. x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Sue, you were in my thoughts as I wandered the Jane Austen centre :). Our trip was fabulous and every day was so much fun. I was very proud of my packing and for my stylish outfits for the whole month 🙂 xx

      Like

  4. Your visit to Bath sounds wonderful. Our one visit there was so long ago, during our pre-parent days, that I barely recall most of it. We are big JA fans here and love that quote, “Obstinate, headstrong girl” and almost want to cheer every time we hear it.
    That quote alone should be enough to make you smile.
    Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Deb, Always interesting to see what everyone is reading. You remind me how your visit with Dottie last month tore at my heartstrings. 💕I relate to how locations in a book mean more when you have been there, such as the City of Bath for you. I have on my calendar Sept. 28th, to buy Jo’s new book from Amazon “Philly Barker Investigates.” In the nick of time before our Fall camping trip. I love all of your photos, Deb. They always make me smile. xx😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Erica, hope all is well with you, I miss your smiling face 🙂 My time with Dottie was so precious and will stay with me forever, and I know you understand those feelings well. Jo’s book is great and I hope you enjoy it while camping. Take care xx

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Maybe Persuasion or Sense and Sensibility would be the best ones to start with Michele, as they’re well known and also available in movie formats which made more sense to me at times when I got a bit lost. Enjoy!

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    1. The right loo was a perfect choice! I’m about to start Northanger Abbey but think I read it years ago. Some of us are finding that the books say more to us since we read them years ago, maybe as we age we gain a different perspective. Thanks 🙂

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  6. A great post – I’m ashamed to say that notwithstanding living in Somerset for over 12 years I’ve never made it to the Jane Austen museum! I shall endeavour to get there on my next trip to the UK.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Deb. I would have given the same rating as you to both Karen Brooks books. I really enjoyed reading about your visit to Bath and the Jane Austen centre. Your post triggered so many lovely memories of the day I spent in Bath about 15 years ago. I also loved immersing myself in Jane Austen there. I haven’t thought about that say in many years. I remember feeling very sad as I was reading the last book in the Matilda series. I was so sad that this beautiful series was coming to end. Fabulous post Deb.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Jen, i have just this minute finished the final in the Matilda Saga and what a great series it was! I’m so glad you enjoyed my post and you were reminded of your time spent in Bath, it’s such a lovely city!

      Like

  8. Every time I read the word of the city, Bath, I hear my late grandmother’s voice saying it. I loved following your time in UK as you know and it was such fun seeing you doing this too to bring more to YOUR kind of tour…. Denyse P.S. No review of picture books with Dottie?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for recognising the mixed bag Bernie! I try to read a few at once but sometimes it doesn’t work out. Try reading it again, as we age things often fall into a different place!

      Like

  9. What a fantastic outing Deb – especially now you’re such a big Jane Austen fan. I must say though that Mr Darcy looks a little scrawny in comparison to my memories of him emerging from the lake 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Ali, it was a fun outing on my own. Sometimes when you’re travelling it’s nice to get out and do different things. That book was a great read and fitted in nicely with our bookclub readings!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m going to have another go at the JA Museum in Bath this trip – it will be 3rd time lucky as on both previous visits it’s been closed for private functions. Wish me luck!

    Liked by 1 person

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