Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Book Review: Seeking Mansfield (Seeking Mansfield #1)

Seeking Mansfield (Seeking Mansfield, #1)About the Book:
Title: Seeking Mansfield (Seeking Mansfield #1)
Author: Kate Watson
Pub. Date: May 16, 2017
Publisher: Flux
Pages: 300
Rating: 4/5 stars


Sixteen-year-old Finley Price has perfected two things: how to direct a world-class production, and how to fly way, way under the radar. The only person who ever seems to notice Finley is her best friend, the Bertram's son Oliver. If she could just take Oliver's constant encouragement to heart and step out of the shadows, she'd finally chase her dream of joining the prestigious Mansfield Theater. 

When teen movie stars Emma and Harlan Crawford move next door to the Bertram's, they immediately set their sights on Oliver and his cunning sister, Juliette, shaking up Finley and Oliver's stable friendship. As Emma and Oliver grow closer, Harlan finds his attention shifting from Juliette to the quiet, enigmatic, and thoroughly unimpressed Finley. Out of boredom, Harlan decides to make her fall in love with him. Problem is, the harder he seeks to win her, the harder he falls for her. 

But Finley doesn't want to be won, and she doesn't want to see Oliver with anyone else. To claim Oliver's heart—and keep her own—she'll have to find the courage to do what she fears most: step into the spotlight.


Even though I wasn't the biggest fan of the original Mansfield Park, I am definitely a sucker for a Jane Austen retelling! So I knew without a doubt I was going to be checking out Kate Watson's retelling...and let me tell you, it was more or less perfect! She seamlessly updates the original story for a new generation while still building on that creepy atmosphere that was part of the original novel. Her writing is superb that made you love every bit of the story, and the pacing was perfect making it a relatively quick read. 

The characters were excellently written and very true to their original counterparts. Ms. Watson updated the story enough for it to feel like a totally new story, but for fans of Jane Austen, you'll easily be able to see the connections. All of the characters were smart and fun to read. Finley is an easy character to like. She's sensible yet shy. I loved her friendship with Oliver because he was the one person who was always there, supporting her and keeping her above water when she felt like drowning. But the thing I loved the most was her development over the course of the story. Finley blossoms all on her own and becomes someone that you admire a great deal. I was easily able to connect to Finley (much more than I did Fanny Price in the original novel). Oliver...Oliver is seriously the sweetest, most generous person. I could go on for days about him and his character that's how much I loved him. But I'll let you discover his wonderful character all on your own.

While I'm not a fan of love triangles (in this case it's more of a square than a triangle actually), for some reason I didn't mind it at all in this novel. How Kate Watson managed to do this, I don't know, but she made it work so well that the love triangle didn't seem out of place or unnecessary--which is typically my biggest complaint. 

I highly recommend checking out this novel by Kate Watson if you are a fan of Jane Austen retellings. It is one of the best I have seen, and was very impressed by how much I enjoyed Finley's story. Even if you aren't a fan of Jane Austen and have never read a single thing by her, you'll still enjoy this book. And I think that's what makes this story even better--it can be thoroughly be enjoyed by everyone! 

Happy reading :)


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