From School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-A pleasant and informative audio biography of English novelist Jane Austen joins the wealth of print biographies that have appeared in the last few years. Reader Teresa Gallagher, a well-known voice on BBC radio drama, sets a most appropriate tone here with her expressive and precise British accent. Classical piano music provides an introduction as well as short atmospheric breaks in the reading. Jane Austen, born in late 18th century Southern England, led an active and happy, though not highly eventful life, surrounded by a high-spirited and affectionate family. She began writing as a young girl, and though the four novels that were published during her lifetime (Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park and Emma) received favorable reviews, she was not celebrated as an author while alive. Listeners will get a clear sense of the relationships and social encounters which were important to Austen's life and inspirations to her writing. Her novels provide a valuable record of the manners of upper middle class English country gentry, and Elizabeth Jenkins' biography similarly depicts the novelist, her class, and the era. School and public libraries will be rewarded with this fine portrait of the life and times of a still popular English woman author.-Marilyn Higgins, Metuchen High School, NJ
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