Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner - Author Picture

Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner - Author

Jane Austen was born on 16 December 1775, at the rectory in the village of Steventon in Hampshire, England. The youngest but one of eight children, she was educated mainly at home and never lived apart from her family. She played a lot with her brothers, but was closest to her older sister, Cassandra. The children wrote and performed plays to amuse themselves, and even as a little girl Jane was encouraged to write.

When she was fourteen she wrote her first novel, Love and Freindship (yes, she couldn’t spell!), and then a rather ambitious History of England. In her early twenties Jane Austen wrote the novels that were later to be published as Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice and Northanger Abbey.

Jane loved dancing, and went to balls in many of the great houses of the neighbourhood. She adored the countryside, so was horrified when her father announced to the sixteen-year-old Jane that the family would be moving to Bath. Jane hated the confines of a busy town and missed Steventon. To make matters worse, her father died in 1805, which left the family very poor. Then, while on holiday, Jane fell in love, but the young man died soon afterwards, leaving her deeply upset.

The family could not afford to stay in Bath, so Jane moved to Southampton with her sisters and mother to live with naval brother Frank and his wife Mary. Her favourite brother, Henry, was a prosperous banker in London, and Jane often went to stay with him, enjoying art exhibitions and visits to the theatre.

In July 1809 her brother Edward offered his mother and sisters a permanent home on his Chawton estate, back in the Hampshire countryside. It was a small but comfortable house with a pretty garden, and it provided the settled home which Jane needed in order to write. She revised Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice, and then embarked on a period of intensive writing which produced MansfieldPark and Emma. Persuasion and a rewritten version of Northanger Abbey were published in 1818, the year after her death. In her last years she suffered from a kidney illness called Addison’s Disease, for which there was no cure. As she could not walk far, she used a little donkey carriage which can still be seen at the Jane Austen Museum at Chawton. Jane died in her sister Cassandra’s arms in the early hours of 18 July 1817. She was 41 years old.

None of Jane’s books published in her lifetime had her name on them — they were always described as being written ‘By a Lady’.

Featured Books, with extracts, by Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner

Jane Austen: 6 book boxed set
Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner
What a treat! All six Real Reads Jane Austen titles in a smart, tidy box. Now you can be the best-read Austen fan on the block with the most enjoyment and the least effort. The box set contains: Pride...
Lovereading Price: £19.99 - Saving £5.00 (20%) Featured in: 11+ readers
Format: Quantity Pack | Released 01/03/2009
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Emma
Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner
Following her governess's marriage, wealthy, spoilt Emma Woodhouse seeks new company and new amusement. But that gets her into awful trouble...shocking secrets and mysteries to unravel. With little understanding of her own feelings, can Emma lead anyone towards happiness? Can...
Lovereading Price: £3.99 - Saving £1.00 (20%) Featured in: 9+ readers | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 24/03/2008
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Northanger Abbey
Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner
Catherine Morland has little experience of the world. Guided only by the gothic horror stories she so loves reading, Catherine stumbles through her adventures. Will hers be a happy ending? Will she find a hero to share her ‘happily ever...
Lovereading Price: £3.99 - Saving £1.00 (20%) Featured in: 9+ readers | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 24/03/2008
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Persuasion
Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner
Differing from Austen's other novels in adopting a more sober tone, this one describes the ordeals of Anne Elliot, who has been persuaded by her family to reject Captain Wentworth. This and the other Real Reads retellings are a fantastic way...
Lovereading Price: £3.99 - Saving £1.00 (20%) Featured in: 9+ readers | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 24/03/2008
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Mansfield Park
Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner
What a fantastic way to introduce young children to classic literature. Retellings of some of the best-known and best-loved classics; beautifully presented and skilfully retold (and condensed – 64 pages in total) and illustrated, they are true to the original...
Lovereading Price: £3.99 - Saving £1.00 (20%) Featured in: 9+ readers | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 24/02/2008
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Pride and Prejudice
Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner
Misunderstandings, poor judgement, wicked lies, broken hearts, hurtful words. Will Elizabeth's prejudice and Darcy's pride be the ruin of them both? This and the other retellings by Real Reads are a fantastic way to introduce young children to some of the best-known...
Lovereading Price: £3.99 - Saving £1.00 (20%) Featured in: 9+ readers | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 14/02/2008
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Sense and Sensibility
Jane Austen - retold by Gill Tavner
Will Elinor's sense be strong enough to support both sisters, or will Marianne's sensibility bring tragedy? This and the other retellings by Real Reads are a fantastic way to introduce young children to some of the best-known and best-loved classics; beautifully...
Lovereading Price: £3.99 - Saving £1.00 (20%) Featured in: 9+ readers | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 14/02/2008
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