Jane Austen in Scarsdale or Love, Death, and the SATs

I wrote this review in 2009 and read it again recently and linked it. I still agree with everything I wrote here. 😀

Paula Marantz Cohen wrote a delightful book. It follows the plot of Persuasion. The main character Anne Ehrlich is a guidance counselor at a high school and she is very dedicated to helping them in any way she can. Trouble arrives when the nephew of her old lover comes to the school. Ben Cutler had once worked in a travel agency and they had been very much in love. However, Anne’s grandmother, Winnie, persuaded her that it was not the best match. She broke it off and has regretted it ever since. Now, Ben is a wealthy author of many travel guides and has popped into her life again.

What I liked about this book was that it wasn’t an exact replica of Persuasion. The story did have a similar plotline, but it took on a life of its own. The Lady Russel-like character is Winnie, the grandmother, and she has a personality that draws you in and captures you. I loved her. I never like Lady Russel so much. 😉 And I fell for Ben, whose personality differs greatly from Cpt. Wentworth. He captured my heart completely. Anne, however, was the star of the book. Her love for her students, her unswerving devotion to Ben despite his fiance, and her quirky ways were completely delightful.

The only true problem I had with this book was the title. There is no mention of Jane Austen in the entire book. While any true Austen fan would recognize the plot immediately, anyone else would quite possibly be puzzled at the title. I, myself, wondered at it when I was finished with the book. I can only suppose that it was meant to draw in Austen fans. I would recommend it for everyone, even those who do not like Austen. It is a cute novel that captures the attention completely.


One thought on “Jane Austen in Scarsdale or Love, Death, and the SATs

  1. Celia says:

    I’ve never heard of this one – thanks for the mention and review! I’ll have to check it out. Persuasion is a huge favorite of mine! Good luck with the rest of your Everything Austen challenge items!


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