• "Austen's characters are unquestionably one key to her greatness. Her understanding of the human heart is forensic and also frosted with the necessary detachment that gives deeper meaning to her rendering of human frailty.. In Emma, Jane Austen shows us the halting development of an adolescent girl from perky narcissism to something approaching empathy"

  • "It is the cleverest of books. I especially love the dialogue - every speech reveals the characters' obsessions and preoccupations, yet it remains perfectly natural...absolutely gripping"

    Susannah Clarke
  • "Jane Austen is my favourite author! Shut up in measureless content, I greet her by the name of most kind hostess, while criticism slumbers"

    E.M. Forster
  • "The wit of Jane Austen has for partner the perfection of her taste"

    Virginia Woolf
  • "Like Irvine Welsh, I am a great admirer of Jane Austen"

    Alexander McCall Smith