Jane Austen’s popularity never seems to fade. She has hordes of devoted fans, and there have been numerous adaptations of her life and work. But who was Jane Austen? The writer herself has long remained a mystery. And despite the resonance her work continues to have for teens, there has never been a young adult trade biography on Austen.
Catherine Reef changes that with this highly readable account. She takes an intimate peek at Austen’s life and innermost feelings, interweaving her narrative with well-crafted digests of each of Austen’s published novels. The end result is a book that is almost as much fun to read as Jane’s own work—and truly a life revealed. Includes bibliography and index.
Dear Amazon Readers:
Discovering Jane Austen is like making a friend for life. Or many friends. When we open Pride and Prejudice, or Emma, or one of Austen’s other great novels, we come face-to-face with her memorable characters. We meet sparkling Elizabeth Bennet, proud Fitzwilliam Darcy, capable Anne Elliot, reckless Mr. Willoughby, and sensitive Marianne Dashwood. We laugh, cry, or even cringe as they make mistakes and learn tough lessons. We rejoice when they find happiness at last. They were created long ago, but they are like people in every age.
It is a joy to return to Austen’s novels throughout our lives, because like all great books, they continue to surprise and delight. But what about the woman behind the words? Our view of Jane Austen relies on a single watercolor portrait, a handful of letters, her family’s written accounts, and, of course, her six published novels. Yet from these sources a portrait emerges of a brilliant woman with a deep understanding of human nature. She loved a good laugh--often at others’ expense--and she was devoted to her large and active family.
Two centuries separate us from Jane Austen. Her world was far different from our own. It was a world where money and social class governed who might marry, and when. It was a place where women lived restricted lives, hemmed in by society’s rules. Laws that favored men forced women to be dependent on their husbands, fathers, and brothers. I evoke this world in Jane Austen: A Life Revealed, because understanding it is key to appreciating Austen and her books.
Jane Austen’s story is bound up with the creation of her novels. They reflect their author and her worldview. But they are also timeless tales of love and family life and coming of age. Jane Austen: A Life Revealed is both a biography and an introduction to Austen’s work. I hope it will give you the foundation you need to savor these classic novels.
Just as important, Jane Austen: A Life Revealed is meant to be enjoyed. After all, I wrote it for you.
I loved Catherine Reef’s biography of the Bronte sisters, so I grabbed this off my library shelf when I saw it. I wasn’t disappointed. Read morePublished 1 month ago by E.J. Jones
Competent biography but not particularly insightful. Good choice for someone who wants an overview of the author and the historical period.Published 5 months ago by B. Pocker
I am no fan of non-fiction, especially biographies, but I love all things Jane Austen and decided to give this book a try. I'm glad I did! Read morePublished on July 17, 2013 by Kelli of I'd So Rather Be Reading
Catherine Reef has done a wonderful job of putting together a biography of Jane Austen in a book of reasonable length. It is simple to understand and nicely illustrated. Read morePublished on July 23, 2012 by Valerie B. Lull
This book caught my eye for its clean, well styled cover and hooked me with its promise of a simple and concise biography of Jane Austen written for young adults. Read morePublished on January 10, 2012 by Elizabeth A. Hart
Some readers take on Jane Austen out of necessity for school. Others linger over her words for pleasure. Read morePublished on September 20, 2011 by Wendy Darling
It's hard to figure out exactly who Austen really was. After her untimely death, her family lost many of her letters or destroyed a lot of her personal effects in an effort to... Read morePublished on June 17, 2011 by Feminist Texican Reads