Longbourn

Longbourn (Paperback)

$15.95
Not Yet Published

Indie Next List

October 2013
This is the very enjoyable 'downstairs' version of Pride and Prejudice -- the lives of maids, housekeepers, and footmen at the Longbourn estate. Even Jane Austen herself would be enthralled with this tale filled with fully realized characters, a very romantic plot, and tantalizing glimpses of all our favorite literary figures. I savored each and every moment and I trust you will too! -- Mary Toni, R.J. Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT

Description


A New York Times Book Review Notable Book, a Seattle Times Best Title, a Christian Science Monitor Best Fiction Book, a Miami Herald Favorite Book, and a Kirkus Best Book of the Year

Pride and Prejudice was only half the story •
 
If Elizabeth Bennet had the washing of her own petticoats, Sarah often thought, she’d most likely be a sight more careful with them.
 
In this irresistibly imagined belowstairs answer to Pride and Prejudice, the servants take center stage. Sarah, the orphaned housemaid, spends her days scrubbing the laundry, polishing the floors, and emptying the chamber pots for the Bennet household. But there is just as much romance, heartbreak, and intrigue downstairs at Longbourn as there is upstairs. When a mysterious new footman arrives, the orderly realm of the servants’ hall threatens to be completely, perhaps irrevocably, upended.

Jo Baker dares to take us beyond the drawing rooms of Jane Austen’s classic—into the often overlooked domain of the stern housekeeper and the starry-eyed kitchen maid, into the gritty daily particulars faced by the lower classes in Regency England during the Napoleonic Wars—and, in doing so, creates a vivid, fascinating, fully realized world that is wholly her own. 

About the Author


Jo Baker was born in Lancashire, England, and educated at Oxford University and Queen’s University Belfast. She is the author of the novels The Under­tow, Offcomer, The Mermaid’s Child, and The Telling. She lives in Lancaster.

Praise for Longbourn…


A Best Book of the Year Selection: New York Times 100 Notable, Seattle Times, The Guardian, The Daily Mail, Kirkus Reviews
 
“Rich, engrossing, and filled with fascinating observations. . . . If you are a Jane Austen fan . . . you will devour Jo Baker’s ingenious Longbourn.”
O, The Oprah Magazine

“Original and charming, even gripping, in its own right.”
The New York Times Book Review

“Masterful.”
The Miami Herald

“A witty, richly detailed re-imagining. . . . Fans of Austen and Downton Abbey will take particular pleasure in Longbourn, but any reader with a taste for well-researched historical fiction will delight in Baker’s involving, informative tale.”
People

“A bold novel, subversive in ways that prove surprising, and brilliant on every level.”
USA Today

“Delightful.” 
The New Yorker

“A triumph: a splendid tribute to Austen’s original but, more importantly, a joy in its own right, a novel that contrives both to provoke the intellect and, ultimately, to stop the heart.”
The Guardian (London)

“[A] fitting tribute, inventing a touching love story of its own.”
The Wall Street Journal

“A freshly egalitarian reimagining.”
Vogue

“[Baker’s] writing style draws admirably from Austen’s.”
—Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Engaging and rewarding.”
The Washington Times

Longbourn is told with glee and great wit.”
The Daily Beast

“The Bennet family’s servants imagined by Baker have richly complicated lives and loyalties. . . . Baker deserves a bouquet. . . . Refreshing.”
The Seattle Times

“There’s a finale so back-of-the-hand-to-the-forehead romantic, someone should render it in needlepoint.”
Entertainment Weekly

“Excellent. . . . In Sarah the housemaid, Baker has created a heroine, living in the same house as Elizabeth Bennet, who manages to shine despite Elizabeth’s long literary shadow.”
Christian Science Monitor

“Lively. . . . Baker’s vivid passages about the natural world, working conditions and even of sorrow are . . . well detailed and articulated.”
The Plain Dealer

Longbourn is a really special book, and not only because its author writes like an angel. . . . There are some wildly sad and romantic moments; I was sobbing by the end. . . . Beautiful.” —Wendy Holden, Daily Mail (London)

“Inspired. . . . This is a genuinely fresh perspective on the tale of the Bennet household. . . . A lot of fun.” 
Sunday Times (London)

“This clever glimpse of Austen’s universe through a window clouded by washday steam is so compelling it leaves you wanting to read the next chapter in the lives below stairs rather than peer at the reflections of any grand party in the mirrors of Netherfield.” 
Daily Express (London)

“Impressive. . . . An engrossing tale we neither know nor expect.” 
Daily Telegraph (London)

Product Details ISBN-10: 0345806972
ISBN-13: 9780345806970
Published: Vintage
Pages: 432
Language: English