Becoming Jane Austen
By Jon Spence; Continuum International Publishing Group 2007
Summary: Jon Spence's biography of Jane Austen paints an intimate portrait of the much-loved novelist. Spence's meticulous research has uncovered evidence that Austen and the charming young Irishman Tom Lefroy fell in love at the age of twenty and that the relationship inspired "Pride and Prejudice," one of the most celebrated works of fiction. "Becoming Jane Austen" gives the fullest account we have of the romance, which was more serious and more enduring than previously believed. Seeing this love story in the context of Jane Austen's whole life enables us to appreciate the profound effect the relationship had on her art and on subsequent choices that she made in her life. Full of insight and with an attentive eye for detail, Spence explores Jane Austen's emotional attachments and the personal influences that shaped her as a novelist. The narrative provides a point of entry into Jane Austen's world as she herself perceived and experienced it. It is a world familiar to us from her novels, but in "Becoming Jane Austen," Austen herself is the heroine.
My Review: If I haven’t told you all this already I will do it now. I am a huge Jane Austen fan. I devour her books and any biographies on her. I was randomly walking through a local book store when I saw the cover of Becoming Jane Austen, I stopped in my tracks, picked it up, and bought it. I had just watched my favorite movie Becoming Jane the night before and could not get enough about the Tom Leffory and Jane Austen almost love story. This book is a biography of Jane Austen’s life that showed that Jon Spence truly knows about Jane and her life. The only thing that I didn’t like about this book is that at time Jon Spence put some of his own theories instead of fact. The best chapter in this book is when it talks about Jane’s love life and the relationships she had. If you love Jane Austen, then you will love this book.