About the book: Samantha Moore has always hidden behind the words of others-namely her favorite characters in literature. Now, she will learn to write her own story-by giving that story to a complete stranger.
Growing up orphaned and alone, Sam found her best friends in the works of Austen, Dickens, and the Brontë sisters. The problem is that she now relates to others more comfortably as Elizabeth Bennet and Jane Eyre than as herself.
Sometimes we lose ourselves in the things we care about most.
But life for this twenty-three-year-old is about to get stranger than fiction, when an anonymous benefactor (calling himself "Mr. Knightley") offers to put Sam through the prestigious Medill School of Journalism. There is only one catch: Sam must write frequent letters to the mysterious donor, detailing her progress.
As Sam's program and peers force her to confront her past, she finds safety in her increasingly personal letters to Mr. Knightley. And when Sam meets eligible, best-selling novelist Alex Powell, those letters unfold a story of love and literature that feels as if it's pulled from her favorite books. But when secrets come to light, Sam is --- once again --- made painfully aware of how easily trust can be broken.
Reay's debut novel follows one young woman's journey as she sheds her protective persona and embraces the person she was meant to become.
My review: I really enjoyed this wonderful story that puts a fun spin on Jane Austen and other beloved classics. With plenty of quotes and some similar plot twists, I loved the reminders of books I've enjoyed. I loved Sam and felt for her awkwardness and fear over being hurt and vulnerable. Though I in no way had a horrible childhood like her, I could relate to her escaping to books and finding friends there. I loved watching her grow in so many ways and cheering her on to succeed. I'm not a huge fan of the diary format because I like to get other characters' perspectives, too, but it was an effective way to really get inside Sam's head. There's a sweet romance and I liked the twist at the end, though it wasn't a complete surprise. What makes this book even more amazing is that it's from a debut author! I can't wait to read what she writes next. Make sure to grab this book!
I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review.
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Meet the author: Katherine Reay has enjoyed a life-long affair with the works of Jane Austen and her contemporaries. After earning degrees in history and marketing from Northwestern University, she worked as a marketer for Proctor & Gamble and Sears before returning to school to earn her MTS. Her works have been published in "Focus on the Family" and the "Upper Room." Katherine currently lives with her husband and three children in Seattle. "Dear Mr. Knightley" is her first novel.
Learn more about Katherine at: http://katherinereay.com/
One winner will receive:
- A Kindle Fire HDX
- Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay
- Handmade Austen-themed items (scarf, mug, bracelet, and necklace)
Two ways to win! Enter today by clicking one of the icons below or participating in the Pinterest contest (see banner below)—or BOTH!
But hurry, the giveaway ends on December 3rd. Winner will be announced at the "Dear Mr. Knightley" Austen-themed Facebook Author Chat Party on the 3rd. Join Katherine (and Austen fans) for an evening of book chat, prizes, and an exclusive look at Katherine's next book.
So grab your copy of Dear Mr. Knightley and join Katherine on the evening of December 3rd for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)