A Review of Nothing But Patience: A Modern Retelling of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility

Thank you to Melanie from Grab the Lapels for reading and reviewing my modern update to Sense and Sensibility. She wrote:

The characters in Nothing but Patience are lovely and consistent. Even the hateful people are humanized fairly under Blair’s careful hand. I especially loved interactions between Noor and Maryam and their newfound Uncle Ahmed, also from Sri Lanka, and his husband, Jack.

I am so glad Melanie was able to connect with my characters. I wrote this story for people who enjoy Jane Austen adaptations and/or are interested in a light story with characters from a diverse background we don’t often see in books.

The story tracks the plot of Sense and Sensibility with the addition of a legal twist inspired by facts from the original novel, and it features modern versions of Elinor and Marianne who share my Sri Lankan-American background. In the original novel, the sisters have lost their great-uncle, their father, and their home. The same is true in my story, except now, their modern counterparts–Noor and Maryam–have the option to sue to get their home back.

Nothing but Patience is available now


  1. I’m not sure what someone wrote about your book and the fact that the characters are Sri Lankan instead of white British people, but it seems to have cut you deeply. I’m so sorry for that, Amal, and just remember that when people are concerned about the status of white individuals, there are two things at work: 1) they know minorities are treated badly and don’t want to become a minority themselves when they see an expansion of non-white characters, or 2) they believe in white supremacy. Neither of these you can fix on your own, and neither are actually about your novel itself.

    1. Thanks, Melanie. I’m only speaking about the feedback generally because I would never want to attack anyone for their honest thoughts, and I have no reason to believe that anyone intended harm. Still, it is disheartening to see feedback that contains implicit biases. I understand that some readers may have trouble following a plot when the names of the people and places aren’t from their culture or country. My issue is when those readers provide feedback saying it is a problem with the book instead of seeing it as something they should understand about themselves. There are good reasons to criticize my book, but the cultural background of the characters isn’t one of them.

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