Two Guys Read Jane Austen (a review)


With women predominating JASNA-Vermont’s chapter, one question that continually arises is: What do MEN have to say about Jane Austen’s novels?? In the end, according to TWO GUYS READ JANE AUSTEN, the answer is multi-faceted and not always gender-specific.

TWO GUYS READ JANE AUSTEN is a delight, guaranteed to make the reader chuckle – and read certain sections out loud to anyone who will listen. Being quickly published proves a boon, as timely topics like Anne Hathaway and Becoming Jane are subjects of the first letters: 

 “…I was hoping you and Kathy could weigh in with an opinion. We just saw Anne in the film Becoming Jane ….Miranda didn’t much like her, but then, in my experience, Anne Hathaway is a bit of a litmus test. If you like her, you’re a man; if you don’t you’re a woman.”

The epistolary style of the book (email versus letters) recalls 84, Charing Cross Road, although the poignancy of that novel is missing. While readers will learn a bit about the lives of authors Steve Chandler and Terry Hill, it is for their quips and deeper thoughts on Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice that will have you pulling this off the shelf for a re-read every once in a while. TWO GUYS READING JANE AUSTEN would be useful to many book groups; it would engender discussion on (especially) Pride and Prejudice. Continue reading

In Today’s Post

When I opened the door to go to the library today (I’m desperately in search of the audio version of Pride and Prejudice as read by Emilia Fox; damned thing is always CHECKED OUT!), I spied a large-ish padded manila envelope that had just gotten delivered with a few too many bills and junk mail… Anyway, while it wasn’t my long-long awaited CD from Oxford University with Drummond Smith letters, it was still a ‘gift’ from out of the blue: a book!

TWO GUYS READ JANE AUSTEN – and it’s written as letters between the two authors, Steve Chandler and Terrence N. Hill. What could be more of interest!

I grabbed the cover from Amazon, where there’s a 4-7 week wait; so you might want some publisher information: Robert D. Reed Publishers; P.O. Box 1992; Brandon, OR 97411. email:; web: Its cover price is $11.95.

Let’s take a moment to dip inside it…

Page 47, the letter is from Steve to Terry (12 Dec 2007): ‘Sisters! A great song from the movie White Christmas … Sisters! (Jane Austen writes about complex family dynamics so well, so bitingly funny.) … So I remember my girls and what sisters they were and are to each other. How sweet it was and has been. And I agree with you, it’s a lot like Jane and Elizabeth in our book . . . maybe easier to do than brothers who are taught a more competitive approach. Scrapping for attention and approval.’

The back cover reads: This is the third book in the critically-acclaimed TWO GUYS series [the others being: Two Guys Read Moby-Dick and Two Guys Read the Obituaries]… This time the two guys take on the biggest challenge yet — Jane Austen. Follow their wild and often hilarious exchanges as they fly through Pride and Prejudice and the darker, more complex Mansfield Park.

Deb, for one, will undoubtedly welcome that they read Mansfield Park !

More to come…