Synopses & Reviews
WHERE DO BOOKS TAKE YOU?
With a suitcase full of Jane Austen novels en espanol, Amy Elizabeth Smith set off on a yearlong Latin American adventure: a traveling book club with Jane. In six unique, unforgettable countries, she gathered book-loving new friends — taxi drivers and teachers, poets and politicians — to read Emma, Sense and Sensibility, and Pride and Prejudice.
Whether sharing rooster beer with Guatemalans, joining the crowd at a Mexican boxing match, feeding a horde of tame iguanas with Ecuadorean children, or tangling with argumentative booksellers in Argentina, Amy came to learn what Austen knew all along: that we're not always speaking the same language — even when we're speaking the same language.
But with true Austen instinct, she could recognize when, unexpectedly, she'd found her own Senor Darcy.
All Roads Lead to Austen celebrates the best of what we love about books and revels in the pleasure of sharing a good book — with good friends.
"In this humorous memoir, devoted Austen fan Smith, a writing and literature teacher, sets out to discover whether Austen's magic translates for readers in six Latin American countries (Guatemala, Mexico, Ecuador, Chile, Paraguay, and Argentina), where she organizes book clubs to discuss Spanish translations of Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, and Emma. Though Smith continuously calls attention to her limited Spanish language skills, she skillfully highlights how and why certain Spanish words are apt for describing Austen's world and characters. Austen's work provides a touchstone for surprising discussions about class, gender, and race, as well as history and literature. Smith's account reads like an educational travel blog, full of colorful characters, overviews of the history and the traditions of each culture, as well as reflections on her own preconceived assumptions and stereotypes. This enjoyable book should appeal to fans of literature and travel, especially those interested in Latin America. Agent: Lisa Adams, The Garamond Agency. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"A delightful romp that should appeal to those who appreciate the savvier realms of chick lit." Kirkus
"Narrated in a breezy style, this is a fun twist on the fascination with all things Jane." Booklist
"An illuminating insight...fascinating." Amanda Grange, bestselling author of Mr. Darcy's Diary
"A journey through both a physical landscape and the geography of the human heart and mind...delightfully entertaining and often deeply moving, this book reminds us that Austen's world — and her characters — are very much alive." Michael Thomas Ford, author of Jane Bites Back
About the Author
Amy Elizabeth Smith has an undergraduate degree in music and a masters and PhD in English. She teaches writing and literature (including a course on Jane Austen) at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California. She loves traveling, dancing, classic cinema, and watching squirrel videos on YouTube.