Book 1

Jan. 9th, 2007 03:42 pm
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I finished Claire Tomalin's biography of Jane Austen over the weekend. It's really excellent - well-researched and with an easy writing tone that made it simple to keep up with the often complicated family and county relationships Austen had. It was refreshing to read a study of Austen's life that didn't have the implication of waste that other, more romantic, bios do. Not marrying seems to have saved her from the horrible fate that befell many of her female cousins and acquaintances - dying, often in their mid-thirties, during the birth of their eighth or ninth child. If you're not a fan of Austen, it also works as a good historical study of society in the late Georgian/early Regency age, when a small amount of bad luck could easily result in a sharp dive into poverty and destitution.

Tomalin's literary analysis of the books is also excellent. For the first time in years, I actually thought about Mansfield Park in a very different way and may re-read it to see if I can get past the prissiness of the main character, which has always been its major flaw for me. So, a very good biography and one I would highly recommend if you're into that kind of thing.

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terriem

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