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Home » Authors » Jane Austen

About Jane Austen

Jane Austen was born in 1775 in the small village of Steventon, Hampshire, England. Her father was a clergyman and her mother came from a family fairly remotely connected to the aristocracy. She had five brothers and one beloved sister three years her senior. While she lived the comfortable life of a member of the eighteenth century middle classes she lived under the weight carried by all girls of her era, that of needing to marry well. Her five brothers progressed through life successfully, leading well-respected, and well-rewarded, careers in such areas as the Navy and banking, but to Jane and her sister was left the option of trying to find a suitable husband.

It is not surprising that this forms the backbone of the plot of many of Austen’s novels. Whilst examining with a sharp criticism the foibles and snobberies of the upper classes of her day, Austen described with a calm and witty eye the life of a ‘respectable’ girl.

Jane Austen audio book downloads:

Northanger Abbey Audiobook

Northanger Abbey Audiobook
Written by Jane Austen
Read by Lynn Redgrave

The great British actress Lynn Redgrave brings Jane Austen's first novel Northanger Abbey vividly to life in this unabridged audio book.

The story follows the 17 year old Catherine Morland,  one of those Austen girls who, in spite of her ironic portrait as a romantic heroine in training, ends up being someone whose story you’d follow to the end of the world. The villains and suitors somehow acquire those extra sixteen layers that Austen cannot help herself writing.

Northanger Abbey is a wonderful piece of gothic horror - but at the same time as you’re grinning at the terrifying manuscript Catherine finds in her bedroom, you’ll be delighting in the sheer brilliance of the first of Jane Austen’s great novels.

Persuasion Audiobook

Persuasion Audiobook
Written by Jane Austen
Read by Olivia Williams

English actress Olivia Williams, well known for her star performances in The Sixth Sense, Rushmore and Miss Austen Regrets reads this unabridged audiobook of one of the world’s favourite classic novels exclusively for Silksoundbooks.

Persuasion, written by Jane Austen is a very funny exploration of the eighteenth century sport of trying to find a decent husband and how to resist the persuasions of those around you who think they know what it is to be successful.

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