Anyone who knows me knows how I am a Jane Austen fan, specifically for her Pride and Prejudice novel; It is even my all time favorite movie and any book that has any relation to Jane Austen grabs my attention immediately! Austentatious, from its title, had me sold. Picture you finding an old journal at a used shop and then writing in it, normal right? then the next time you open it to write some more, you find a REPLY BACK to your journal entry! and by none other than the lovely Jane Austen herself! Would you be thrilled? I know I would! However, the protagonist, Nicola, is anything but thrilled. She is an engineer with a one mind track and that is to stick to her "Plan". The plan basically outlines Nicola's rise to the managerial position she always wanted and the type of man that Nicola 'can' fall for and date.
When she meets the ever so hot Sean MacInnes in the most embarrassing of coincidences she can't seem to accept that maybe this is fate and that a musician CAN be compatible with an engineer. Throughout the whole book she has this tug of war with herself where one side tells her this courtship is set to fail because, well he's a musician! and the other side tell her that maybe, just maybe, the annoying advices she's been getting in the journal were the change she needed to amend her life plan. Now this is where I start to have problems with Nicola. I adored her from the beginning because she is an engineer, and I am an undergraduate chemical engineer which made me like her instantly! Do we have many female protagonists who kick butt in their profession? who aren't damsel's in distress? But then, she starts this whole 'I'm an engineer, I must date nerds like me' and 'how can a musician like ME? an ENGINEER?". This was the whole complication in the book; Nicola not feeling like she should date Ian because they're not compatible. See, I did enjoy her dilemma's, but they were strung for a bit too long and the ending felt a bit too rushed. She suddenly is hit by a realization that makes her decide. I just hoped she reached it sooner.
I also liked how Alyssa showed the readers that even though you're an engineer, it doesn't mean you need to stick to that stereotype through Nicola's intern, Beck. She had magenta hair, a sparkly pink nose stud and a spunk attitude, basically the opposite of what a 'typical' engineer is. I would have loved if we had more pages with Beck and explored her side of the story, because in the book, she also snagged a nerd of her own. Overall, Austentatious was an enjoyable book, with a lost heroine that needed Jane Austen's guidance to find her own fairytale ending. Now the only question left to ask is: Can I please get my hands on that journal?
more reviews on Maji Bookshelf