by Carol Shields
I picked up this slim Austen bio on a lark at Powell's. Under 200 pages, this is the perfect little introduction to a most beloved author.
Much of what we know about Austen can be found in the plots of her novels. She came from less than great financial circumstances, and she never married. Sound familiar? We learn about her family and her close relationship with her sister, Cassandra. Also familiar. We also learn about her struggle to get her work published and how thrilled she was to finally achieve literary success.
I liked this brief and accessible biography of Austen. Of course, it didn't hurt that it was written by Carol Shields. I think I'd read anything written by her.