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|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2010
Series: Christian Encounters
Christian Encounters, a series of biographies from Thomas Nelson Publishers, highlights important lives from all ages and areas of the Church. Some are familiar faces. Others are unexpected guests. But all, through their relationships, struggles, prayers, and desires, uniquely illuminate our shared experience.
Jane Austen is now what she never was in life, and what she would have been horrified to becomea literary celebrity.
Austens novels achieved a timelessness that makes them perennially appealing. Kipling and Churchill found solace in her writings during times of war and illness. Mark Twain had a love/hate relationship with her work. And then, theres our celebrity culture: the television hit Pride and Prejudice, the award-winning 1995 film Sense and Sensibility, and all the remakes and prequels and sequels. Modern-day Jane Austen fans just cant seem to leave her characters alone.
Janeia is the authors term for the mania for all things Austen. This biography captures the varied sides of Austens character and places her Christian faith in a more balanced light and with less distortion than has been achieved previously. It is a delightful journey through a life spent making up stories that touched the lives of millions.
I was riveted by Leithart's excellent biography of Austen, the woman who profoundly influenced me to search for the universal truth in my novels. I was able to see the flesh-and-blood woman I've admired since my teens. Highly recommended for Janeites like me!
--Colleen Coble, best-selling author of The Lightkeeer's Daughter
Peter J. Leithart is President of the Theopolis Institute, a leadership training program in Birmingham, Alabama, and serves as Teacher at Trinity Presbyterian Church. He is author, most recently, of Delivered from the Elements of the World and The End of Protestantism. He and his wife Noel have ten children and seven grandchildren.
While author Peter Leithart doesnt bluntly present Austens faith, he does provide plenty of information on the authors life -- information unlikely to be found in any other history source. Leitharts gentle presentation of Austens faith and the faith of those who surrounded her blends easily with the biographical nature of his book. Some readers may find the book doesnt deliver on its promise of providing a Christian encounter, while other readers are likely to enjoy Leitharts subtle chapters on the Christian background of the Austen family. Of course, when an author leaves behind so little information about her life, the reader should expect a biography to include little information.
However, readers are likely to agree on certain elements lacking in Jane Austen. Its difficult to find a reason to keep reading when the pace of the book moves slowly, for example. Also hindering readers is the lack of an organized and non-confusing use of names.
Christian Encounters Series: Jane Austens failure to provide more specific religious information and less specific familial details keeps it from standing out. Leithart does provide some interesting details on the moral inspirations behind her books, proving the evidence of Ephesians 6:16 in her work: In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Fans of Jane Austen will still find Leitharts Jane Austen an interesting and worth-while read, but all others will better spend their time elsewhere. Harmony Wheeler, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
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