Sophia Rose is back with a review of Modern Persuasion by Sara Marks. Sophia writes such great reviews without giving any spoilers. I always enjoy reading them and hope you enjoy this one about an intriguing modern day Persuasion.
by Sara Marks
Illuminated Myth Publishing
Which would you pick: the person you love or your own
What would you do if given a second chance at that decision?
Eight years ago Emma Shaw picked her career and family over the man she loved,
Fredrick Wentworth. Since then she has built a career in publishing and spends
her free time making sure her father and sisters are taken care of. Fredrick
has spent the same years building his career as a screenwriter under increasing
public scrutiny as a celebrity. When the editor of Fredrick’s first book is
injured, Emma is forced to travel with Fredrick on his book tour.
Tension builds for the two former lovers over the course of the tour. Emma and
Fredrick must face their emotional baggage and their misunderstanding about how
their break-up impacted the other. Will they be able to find their way back
together for a second chance at love?
Austen's Persuasion translated into the 21st century quite
easily with a good old-fashioned second chance romance full of the usual
miscues, sizzling glances across the room, and lots of regret and bittersweet
memories of the past all set against the world of book publishing.
Each time I get my hands on a modern retelling, I think what
hooks me in initially is my overwhelming curiosity of how the author will
describe the characters and what will be the setting.
The book publishing industry was an interesting
choice here and one not entirely unfamiliar especially when they were out on
the book tour.
Emma (aka Anne) is an
accomplished editor and has all the makings of a brilliant publisher if her
boss would only loosen up on the reins and let her follow her head.
She has the gift of picking bestsellers and
making an author golden.
were industry legends though her dad is not doing well since his wife's
And... neither is Emma, really,
as she is content to tread water indefinitely.
On the flip side, there is Fredrick, the guy Emma walked
away from when he wanted her to follow him to LA and live a life together.
He went on to screenwrite a popular movie and
now is a bestselling author on a book tour through Emma's publishing house.
Oh my, that reunion meet cute was as cringe-worthy
as you imagine and the awkward tour was a test in fortitude for both Freddy and
Overall, I thought this was a great tribute to the original
story while also proving it was a solid original piece of its own.
It has Persuasion
nuances, but it didn't take
long for me to realize that Emma is no self-effacing Anne who is loaded down
with regret all around.
Emma has one
regret, but also has lots of non-regrets, too.
She followed her dreams and is good at what she does with quite a bit of
respect and admiration in the world she inhabits.
Fredrick might be the Hollywood writer, but
really, it is Emma who is the success story here that everyone in the book
industry is buzzing about.
I say that
because this is the dynamic that is the domino effect changing things all the
This is a romance, but it is also very much a women's
This is Emma's story of what
she does when she gets the chance at a reset.
She is confronted with her past in a visceral way and spends a great
deal of time pondering if she made the right decision back when she was
twenty-two and fresh out of college, if the past should be left in the past,
or, as many are hinting, is this a new opportunity eight years later because
she is in a different place in her life as is Fredrick and what does it matter
if he still hates her.
I think this more put together Anne figure will appeal to
Those who adore Persuasion
and don't mind it set in modern day will read it and have a good time, but I
think this is also for those who might not have liked the meeker Anne of
Austen's novel, but would enjoy her 2.0 version in Emma.
And drunk Emma is really quite the woman to
be reckoned with, let me tell you.
So, yes, I was well pleased with Modern Persuasion
it has strong appeal for contemporary romance and women's fiction fans alike
whether or not the reader has read or watched a tv adaption of Austen's
By day Sara Marks is a librarian in Massachusetts, but
by night she’s an author, knitter, and Wikipedian. She has been writing as part of National
Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) since 2004.
Her first novel, Modern Persuasion, was published in May 2017 with
Illuminated Myth Publishing. Her second
novel, Phi Alpha Pi, is set for release in May 2018.
Born in Boston, MA and raised in Miami, FL, Sara
attended Florida State University for 3 years.
She eventually graduated with an A.A from Miami-Dade College and a B.A. from Florida International University
before moving back to Boston for graduate school. There she got her M.S. in Library and
Information Science from Simmons College and a M.S. in Communications from
Fitchburg State University. Now Sara
lives in Lowell, MA where she works with local writing group Mill Pages, which
creates an annual anthology of short stories, poems, and art work. She is a member of the Society of Independent
Publishers and Authors (SIPA), a group supporting writers in the Merrimack
You can find and contact Sara Marks here:
Thank you, Sophia Rose, for letting More Agreeably Engaged post your review of Modern Persuasion by Sara Marks. Your thoughts were awesome and your review well written. Thank you. It is always a pleasure to read what someone else thinks of a book. I like Persuasion and feel sure I would like this modern version too. Readers, what do you think? Have any of you read it yet? If so, tell me your thoughts.