Reviews

  • Burney lived for 88 years, from the age of Johnson until the age of Dickens...At eight, she was "a dunce"; at 15, her father remarried and Fanny declared she would "never be happy". Yet at 26, her first and most successful novel, Evelina, was published and achieved an enormous triumph...Chisholm does a fine job of recreating her world...we are offered a selection of insights from [Fanny Burney's] journal that stand out for their clarity and distinction.

    David Nokes, Sunday Times
  • Fascinating...Elopements, marital breakdowns, incest, illegitimacy, eating disorders and hysterical illnesses...One of the many strengths of Chisholm's scrupulous biography is that, rather than cash in on the voguishness of this material, she demonstrates how many of these troubles were exacerbated by the values of their time.

    Judith Hawley, Guardian
  • A book warmed by affection and understanding of [Kate Chisholm's] subhect, and fuelled by impressive research...Burney is worth remembering, worth reviving, as a compex and idiosyncratic figure of her times, a rich source of information and indeed a writer of genius.

    Claire Tomalin, Sunday Telegraph
  • Kate Chisholm gives reportage that is every bit as gripping, witty and incisive as her heroine.

    Syrie Johnson, Evening Standard
  • Persuades us of Burney's value as a writer and will send readers to her work with an anticipation of pleasure, which is exactly what a literary biography should.

    Stella Tillyard, The Times

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