Charlotte Brontë before Jane Eyre (The Center for Cartoon Studies Presents)
As the child of a clergyman in the 19th century, Charlotte Brontë’s prospects for the future were limited. Although she was able to get a good education so at least she could support herself as a governess, to Charlotte the life of a governess was dull, stifling, and odious. Her inner life, however, was rich and deeply imagined. All Charlotte wanted was to be able to write the stories that were more real to her than the tedious reality in which she lived. Fulfilling her dream was not easy, but she persisted, finally becoming one of England’s great authors.
This is such a lovely book. Charlotte had a life full of setbacks and frustrations that nearly kept her from writing at all. We readers are immensely fortunate that Charlotte persisted, both in her crafting of stories and in her prolific correspondences and diaries, which are the main sources for this wonderful biography. While Charlotte’s life didn’t hold a lot of action (a fact she lamented), this book’s illustrations reveal the intense emotional drama Charlotte endured, the tension between what she wanted and what her culture and class status expected. It’s a fascinating story and, in this retelling, accessible and interesting to every audience.
|Page Count||112 pages|
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