I stumbled upon Ortberg’s hilarious “How to Tell if You are in a Jane Austen Novel” a while back on The Toast web site so when this popped up as a Goodreads recommendation I took it to heart. A quick search of the CBR site tells me that quite a few of you have laugh snorted through this one. It’s a difficult one to review and I’m very tempted to just say, it’s very funny so go read it, but there is that pesky 250 word minimum for reviews that needs to be addressed, so….
The basics here are as follows: Ortberg comes up with a series of common texting scenarios and infuses them with the temperaments of fictional characters that range from the titular Jane Eyre to Katnis and Peeta from The Hunger Games. Hilarity ensues!
The book is somewhat dependent on at least a cursory knowledge of the characters in question. While some of the texts were still funny even if I was unfamiliar with the source, there were many that I just didn’t get at all. I’m not sure how obscure some of the works are, but for this former English major, there were some that I knew of but had not read, some that I had not read since high school and a few that I had zero reference point for. That’s on me. After I roll up my sleeves and get to those classics that I have neglected, I will have to revisit this book and see what I was missing.