Dear Mr. Knightley
By Katherine Reay
Thomas Nelson, 2013. 327 pgs. Fiction
Samantha Moore has had a rough life. The foster care system has failed her more than she can count, and to survive, she has learned to hide behind some of her favorite literary characters, even borrowing their words. These fictional characters have given her an identity so that no one can know the true Sam and cause her even more pain.
After college she has the amazing opportunity to receive a full scholarship to earn her graduate degree from the prestigious Medill School of Journalism. All she has to do is write letters to the anonymous "Mr. Knightly" to tell him of her progress. It is through these letters that she begins to discover her own identity and starts to recognize and strengthen her connection to people around her.
I wasn't sure what to expect when I started this book. I probably shouldn't admit this, but I am not a Jane Austen fan. This book has so many references to Austen's books, that I wasn't sure I would enjoy it. I loved this book! Sam is a complicated character that is so vulnerable and real. I adored a lot of the side characters too. This is a much deeper novel than I expected and I'm so glad I decided to read it. Who knows, maybe I'll actually start reading some Austen, or at least watch the movies.