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Join Janet Todd for an illustrated online talk on her new book Jane Austen and Shelley in the Garden, followed by a Zoom Q&A.

About Jane Austen and Shelley in the Garden:
Jane Austen is such a presence in Fran’s life that she seems to share her Norfolk cottage and garden, filling her days with wry observations (and sometimes irritating asides). After years teaching and living (fairly contentedly) alone, Fran is ready for a change. This comes through an old Cambridge friend and a new American one. The three women bond through a love of books and a quest for the Romantic poet Shelley in Wales and Venice. Shelley’s yearning for a utopian way of life, so at odds with Jane Austen’s pragmatic realism, makes each woman question her own choices. The novel explores ageing, friendship, friction between generations, hope and the solace of nature.

Austen critic Devoney Looser writes of the book "This is a wonderful, moving novel of playful experimentation, gorgeous image, and brilliantly irreverent juxtaposition."

About Janet Todd:
Janet is a novelist and internationally-renowned scholar, known especially for her biographies of women writers such as Mary Wollstonecraft, Jane Austen, and Aphra Behn. After working as an academic around the world, Janet now lives in Cambridge.


Chawton House

Chawton, Hampshire, GU34 1SJ

01420 541010


Opening times

House and Gardens: 10am - 4.30pm daily

Last entry to House: 3.30pm

Library: The library will be available for research on a case-by-case basis. For more information, please contact

The Old Kitchen Tearoom: 10am - 4pm daily

Last orders at 3.30pm

The Parkland Pantry: 10am - 4pm daily

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