And so it comes to the end and I find myself sad to say good-bye to the girls and guys of Jane Austen Academy. While at the same time, I was dreadfully eager to get this story. Anne and Rick have both been visible secondary characters from the first book onward and there’s was the heartbreaking situation of being the a couple that had their chance and Anne broke them up for reasons that no longer seem important since she never stopped liking him. It was tough for me to be patient as things played out, but that ending was very precious and poignant.
The series, loosely based on the Jane Austen novels with this one retelling Persuasion, has roughly been following the school year and, here at the end, its bittersweet times since the property has been sold with the new owners planning to bulldoze it and turn it into a mall. The students are excited because they are preparing for spring Prom and since it’s their last, they want it to be the best. Love is in the air as all the dating couples prepare for life after high school and the far flung directions they will all plan to go. Not for Anne and she gets to agonize as she watches the bold and brash Lucy cling to Rick while he studiously ignores Anne or is painfully polite. It’s her own fault since she’s the one who broke up with him.
That being said, it is not lacking in merriment and mayhem since Lizzie challenges all the girls in their group to snitch a piece of school history as a souvenir of their time there that was personal to that particular person. And Emma is busy orchestrating the prom down to each meticulous detail keeping them all busy jumping to her orders.
Because of being the last book, this one has a heavier feel to it and its definitely more angsty since the focus is Anne as she says good-bye to her family legacy and is forced to see the result of letting her fears and trying to please her mother lost her Rick. This is definitely a story that took some time to come to a head. It’s all told third person from Anne’s point of view. Anne is not one of the stronger and sparkling heroines that make it easy. She wallows and dreams of what could have been. One can feel sorry for her, but its a stretch to admire her. That is until she kicks it into gear and decides to take charge of her life for the first time. I was very excited to see that happen and it was amazing how freeing that was for her.
There was only one piece that I really wanted to know. Lucy! Yes Lucy! After trying to snitch nearly everyone’s guy though this was apparently innocently done, I wanted to know if she finally found one of her own. Haha!
All in all, I loved this series and don’t want to see it go. I would love to catch up on all the characters in a few years to see where they ended up. I liked that it ended on a hopeful note for everyone and left things open with room for the characters to continue to grow- closer or apart just like real high school relationships. I would recommend this series easily for anyone from middle grade through adults that love YA level sweet contemporary romance.
My thanks to the author for gifting me this book in exchange for an honest review.
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