Lady Susan firmly believes that she is particularly clever, and everyone else dimwitted, save for the young man she hopes will marry her daughter. The only problem is that "everyone else" knows she's clever... and they're terrified. Of course, Lady Susan's hopeful match for her daughter is actually the dimwitted one, and the poor victim of his affections cannot seem to escape him.
Love & Friendship follows a short snippet of the lives of the Vernon family -- Susan, who just wants everything to go her way; Frederica, who really doesn't want to marry that dimwitted gentleman; Reginald, who's not sure what he wants; and Sir DeCourcy, Lady DeCourcy, Charles, and Catherine, who just want to be rid of Susan and provide Frederica with her best chance.
I really like Jane Austen's stories, and though I understand it that Love & Friendship strays quite a bit from the original tale, Lady Susan, I wanted to like it. And while there were one or two comical moments, I really didn't like Lady Susan (or her particular friends) as characters. Susan just seemed far too much of a schemer and generally annoying person, and I felt terribly sorry for all her pawns, relatives and suitors included.
...So, I don't think I'd recommend Love & Friendship. Though I am fan of the time period and setting, it wasn't enough to make me like it, so I'm afraid it's only earned two stars from me.
You may want to know: There are discreet implications, as well as a separation between a married couple due to unfaithfulness.
Have you read Lady Susan? Do you have an opinion on how it compared to Love & Friendship?