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Pence and Sensibility

Books |


Jane Austen: The Banker's Sister by E.J.Clery, reviewed by Charles Keen

A vicar’s daughter, just about managing on her allowance of £20 per annum: not a prime minister in the making, but one of the best novelists of all time. Jane Austen, with help from her brother Henry, just managed to become famous. She earned useful additions to her income from her books, but the sums were meagre and hard earned. Having been cheated at her first attempt, Susan (published after her death as Northanger Abbey), and paid a pitiful sum for her next, Pride and Prejudice, she adopted the more chancy practice of paying the publisher commission and carrying the costs herself. Emma Clery tells the story of her life in stages marked by the books she wrote and their publication. She brings into particular focus the close relationship between Jane and Henry, a kindred spirit, who recognised the quality of her writing, and was a bold entrepreneur himself. Following...


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