Book Review: Emmalee (Book 3 in Jane Austen Diaries) by Jenni James

Genre and Audience: Romance for Teens in High School

You’ll like this if you like: Awesome Character Arcs, Great Themes, Jane Austen, High School Drama, Romance (with all of the Tension and Sweetness), Heroic Heroes (Sorry about the redundancy 😉 ), Sympathetic, Realistic Characters, and Feeling Emotions in the Story.

Cleanliness: A kiss a time or two. Mention of a girl that someone tried to take advantage of. Overall, I would say it’s a clean read.

Hero Type: Beta Male


This is a high school version of Jane Austen’s Emma.  Emmalee’s best friend has recently moved, so she decides to befriend some lucky girl at her school and make her popular. She also takes up matchmaking (which she’s terrible at, despite her assertions otherwise), while she’s perfectly oblivious to some of her own ardent admirers.


First of all, I loved the character arc. Emmalee is a bit snobby and spoiled, yet surprisingly sympathetic. Chase makes the perfect Mr. Knightley for her. Another thing I loved were the emotions. This author has a talent for turning the words on the page into emotions that make your heart clench, which is something I really like in stories. The tense and sweet scenes between Chase and Emmalee were perfect—I loved seeing them clash. This book is semi-short. It’ll take a few hours, but you can do it in a day without too much hassle (okay, if it’s on a Sunday). I’d definitely recommend this. In the mean time, I’ll try and find time to work on the next book in the series 😉


Purchase Emmalee


What kind of romances do you like to read? Do you typically read romances for teens? Or do you prefer a different genre? And which is your favorite of Jane Austen’s books?

Recent Comments

  • Hannah
    February 9, 2016 - 3:10 pm · Reply

    I think it is interesting when writers try to “modernize” classics. Usually, though, I don’t like the new version as much as I like the old one. Do you think this book stays pretty true to the original?

    • Elizabeth Newsom
      February 9, 2016 - 7:03 pm · Reply

      Hmm… The storyline is fairly similar, but deviates slightly. Most of the characters are perfectly the same, but in modern, teenage form, though there is one character who’s an exception. All of the character’s roles are exactly the same.

      Thank you for the comment!

  • Laurie Lucking
    February 14, 2016 - 4:42 am · Reply

    I’m not familiar with this series, but as a huge Jane Austen fan I’m intrigued! Emma is one of my favorites, and I can see how it would translate well into a contemporary re-telling. Thanks for the review, Liz!

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