Jane Austen gave life to the fictional Watson family in 1803, but sadly abandoned them five chapters in – now Joan Aiken completes their story in her ingenious novel, Emma Watson.
Emma Watson has been brought up by her aunt in a wealthy and refined household, an educated lifestyle far removed from her widowed father and five siblings. So when her aunt enters into an imprudent second marriage, nineteen-year-old Emma is sent back home and must join her sisters in their pursuit of a husband . . .
Aiken takes on the fate of Austen’s characters with confidence and skill, flawlessly entwining themes of loss and love together in this stunning regency pastiche.
In the media
Aiken displays a lively turn of invention, not to mention assiduous research into her period . . . undoubtedly entertaining, a pretty, lively, amusing little pastiche
Jane Shilling Sunday Telegraph
Her sense of time and place is impeccable. Others may try but nobody comes close to Aiken in writing Jane Austen sequels
Aiken forces us to see what Austen made her own heroines see: themselves from another perspective
Lizzie Skurnick New York Times Book Review
Shows a confident hand in reworking the various plots and philosophies for which Jane Austen is so admired
Sarah Francis Times Literary Supplement