An amusing romance novel with a literary twist

TITLE = THE ROMANCE DIARIES

AUTHOR = JENNA AUSTEN

GENRE = ROMANCE

INTEREST LEVEL = YEARS 7, 8

This is a very clever and engaging romance novel which is sure to appeal to teen girls. Ruby is determined to act as a matchmaker to her friends and her mother (who has eschewed all thoughts of romance since her husband died some years ago). But Ruby is working on a plan, a plan founded in literature (which is fitting, cos she works part-time in a bookshop). Ruby’s theory is that there are 2 sorts of men: Jane Austen heroes (a la Darcy from Pride and Prejudice) and Jane Eyre heroes (a la Rochester) – and the problem for her mum and her friends is that they keep falling for the wrong one. According to Ruby, if you behave like a Jane Austen heroine then clearly you should aim for Darcy whereas if you behanve like Jane Eyre then it is better that you aim for a Richester.

So with this plan in mind, she sets to work. Unfortunately, things don’t go quite to (her)plan! Especially disconcerting is that some of the boys she beleievd to be Darcy’s may in fact be Rochesters … ooops! Especially if the Rochester is keener on her than on the girl she has set him up with. Are hearts set to be broken.. including her own??

This is a truly engaging romantic novel which gives the reader a bit more to think about than the average love story  especially with the inclusion of lots of pop and literary references (inlcuidng an amusing essay topic comparing Darcy and Edward Cullen!!)

Sure to be a big hit with the girls – may take over the gap left by the discontinuation of the Girlfriend series.

Recommended (dma) ****