Only A Novel

“It is only a novel… or, in short, only some work in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed, in which the most thorough knowledge of human nature, the happiest delineation of its varieties, the liveliest effusions of wit and humour, are conveyed to the world in the best-chosen language” Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

2019 JASNA Tour to England

JASNA Tour of England

JASNA is pleased to announce that registration is now open for their 2019 tour of England!

Organized by the British tour company Pathfinders, the tour “Seeking Adventures Abroad: 200 years of Northanger Abbey,” is designed to celebrate Northanger Abbey, sites mentioned in the novel and film adaptations, as well as important locations in Jane Austen’s life. At the conclusion of the tour, a short trip to Ireland is being offered to visit locations from the 2007 movies Northanger Abbey and Becoming Jane (ed. one of my favorite movies ever!). These locations include Lismore Castle, Blarney Castle,  Trinity College, Cork, and Dublin.

The tour is from July 11 – 20, 2019 with the Ireland trip being offered from July 20 – 24. Tour prices range from $2870 – $3410 depending on the number of participants. An additional $750 will be added if you’d like single accommodations (aka not share a room). These prices do not include the side trip to Ireland or airplane tickets.

For full details on the pricing and registration, visit JASNA’s website. You can also find the complete itinerary here.  The tour’s main website is here. Finally, to register or if you have questions, contact

Note: Only JASNA members can be registrants.

Hotel Reservations Are Now Open for JASNA 2019 AGM

2019 JASNA AGM Logo

An email has been sent this morning from the coordinator of the 2019 AGM that hotels are now available to book for the AGM in Williamsburg, VA. The AGM is from October 4-6, 2019.

For the first time in AGM history, two hotels are open for reservation.

Per the email,

Reservations at the JASNA conference rate, ranging from $138 to $231 per night, may be made using the link on the AGM hotel page, or simply cut and paste the following into your web browser: If you are prompted to enter an access code, use Jane234.

This year’s AGM theme is “200 Years of Northanger Abbey” exploring its humour, horror, and history of the age. There will also be discussions on wide range of topics covering “…the idea of the picturesque, the popularity of the Gothic novel genre, the history of the 12th Light Dragoons, the economics of importing India muslin versus producing muslin in England, even the conversion of Catholic Church buildings into private residences in the centuries after the Dissolution, and more.” JASNA promises it will be a fascinating and exciting AGM.

Tickets have yet to go on sale for the AGM itself. If you’re a JASNA member, make sure you’re subscribing JASNA emails and also check the AGM’s website for further details.

The Young Jane Austen: Northanger Abbey

Cover for "The Young Jane Austen"

I linked to an article on this MOOC months ago but never wrote a post about it. I have no idea why that is!

Anywho, Hillsdale College has put online the lectures and notes for their course, “The Young Jane Austen: Northanger Abbey.” This isn’t a traditional MOOC like FutureLearn’s “Jane Austen: Myth, Reality and Global Celebrity” where the classes are presented asynchronously with other learners and there are quizzes and discussions to be had. Rather, “The Young Jane Austen: Northanger Abbey” is presented as six video lectures with a final quiz at the end. I should note there does seem to be discussion tabs available per each lecture, but you’ll need to create an account to access the information.

(It should be noted it is not clear if the accounts are available to anyone who signs up or just for Hillsdale students only hence my reluctance to to say one way or another.)

Not much information detailed on the course page however lectures range from Jane and her, and her novel’s, relationships that range from education to realism.

As always, if you’ve taken this particular course or any other courses relating to Jane and want to write about it, I’m always pleased to have guest posts. Just contact me and give me an outline of what you’d like to do!

Smells like Jane Austen

Image of the perfume stick of Longbourn by Latherati Soap.

I am a big fan of perfumes, scented oils, candles, and anything else that smells good and has some kind of theme or idea attached to it. It should be no surprise, then, to discover there are quite a few perfumes, soaps, and oils that can help you feel like you’re a part of Austen’s world whether drawing from the Regency era or inspired by.

Below are some of the scents you can buy to get you in the Austen mood.

Pemberley: A Jane Austen Inspired Perfume by Immortal Perfumes ($30+)
The notes are rosewood, coriander, cedarwood, honeysuckle, hyacinth, peony, and vetiver. The scent is best described as sweet and floral.

Longbourn by Latherati Soap  ($12)
The scent is best described as sweet honeysuckle & tart lemon mellowed and warmed by amber, tonka bean and musk.

The Jane Austen Solid Perfume Palette by Latherati Soap ($16)
Six samples of the following scents:

  • Barton Cottage – rose, violet & lily of the valley sit on a bed of green ivy with fruity notes of juicy raspberry & sweet yellow pear grounded in patchouli, caramel, white vanilla and sandalwood
  • Hartfield – ripe strawberries mingle with orchid, jasmine, muguet & violet and a touch of plum, musk & vanilla
  • Longbourn – honeysuckle with green leafy grass notes smoothly blended with zesty lemon and herbal undertones immersed in tonka bean and musk
  • Mansfield – a cup of red clover tea marbled with sweet baby roses and earthy sandalwood
  • The Abbey – soothing lavender floating on a base of cedarwood, rosewood, cardamom, warm amber, vetiver and tonka bean.
  • The Cobb – marine, ozone & sea spray with whispers of jasmine, freesia, lily, citrus and wood grounded by the slightest hint of musk

Latherati Soap has an extensive collection of perfumes, lotions, bath salts, and soaps inspired by Austen.

Jane Austen Perfume Collection by Wicked Good Perfume  ($14.95)
Another sampler based on Austen’s six novels. Each perfume is paired with a quote from the book it is named after and is “Impeccably packaged in a commanding book cloth covered print.”
The scents are:

  • Sense & Sensibility – ‘Sense will always have attractions for me’ – Scented with earl grey, vanilla and lavender.
  • Pride & Prejudice – ‘Happiness of marriage is entirely a matter of chance’ – A mysterious blend of exotic, spicy pomegranate, wild bergamot, dewberry, iris, jasmine; followed by spicy notes of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, with base notes of precious woods and cedar.
  • Persuasion – ‘What is right to be done cannot be done too soon’ – Frankincense, myrrh, patchouli and warm, powdery sandalwood
  • Emma – ‘There is no charm equal to tenderness of heart’ – A delicate tea rose with nuances of green and powder.
  • Northanger Abbey – Life seems but a quick succession of busy nothing’ – Tea at the Abbey. Berry sorbet, vanilla and lemon ice infused with Kombucha tea create an addictively refreshing impression with an Asian twist.
  • Mansfield Park – ‘There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort’ – Top notes of pear and a hint of raspberry are blended with mid notes of osmanthus, vanilla, cinnamon, and clove, on a base of redwood, cedarwood, sandalwood, and light musk.

Mrs. Bennet’s Anxiety Balm by Little Bits(LBCC Historical) ($10)
Little Bits has an extensive collection of make-up and perfumes that replicate make-up from the Regency era or is inspired by Austen.

Elizabeth Bennet by The Little Book Eater
The notes are white tea, apricot, nutmeg, ginger, and gardenia. The scent is best described as sweet and floral. The Little Book Eater also has a few other scents available in the vein of Austen.

You can check out more scents at Etsy!


*Prices subject to change

Jane Austen and Charlotte Brontë web series

Now that we’re in the middle of winter and we are all getting cabin fever, it’s time to turn to YouTube for some entertainment!

Web series have been popular for awhile covering everything from make-up tutorials to unboxing, so it seems ripe that there would be retellings of Austen and Brontë’s works and behold, there is! Below you’ll find modern adaptations of four of Austen’s works, one Jane Eyre, and a quick summary and analysis of Pride and Prejudice just in case you have forgotten.

Word to the wise each of the series runs between 75 – 100+ episodes but each of the episodes are 2 – 4 minutes long. This should keep you plenty entertained during those slow days at work.

(I will recommend you start with The Lizzy Bennet Diaries since those are the most well known as well as popular.)

The Lizzy Bennet Diaries (Pride & Prejudice)

Autobiography of Jane Eyre

Emma Approved (Emma)

Northbound (Northanger Abbey)

Elinor and Marianne take Barton (Sense & Sensibility)

Pride & Prejudice – Thug Notes Summary and Analysis

Don’t let the name fool you. “Dr. Sparky Sweets” gives a great summary and really thought out analysis of the book, so if you’re not adverse to some strong language, definitely check this out.