ABOUT THIS BOOK
Treating Frances Burney (1752-1840) with the seriousness usually reserved for later novelists of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Margaret Anne Doody combines biographical narrative with informed literary criticism as she analyzes not only Burney's published novels, but her plays, fragments of novels, poems, and other works never published. Doody also draws upon a mine of letters and diaries for detailed and sometimes surprising biographical information. Burney's feelings and emotions forcefully emerge in her sophisticated and complex late novels, Camilla and The Wanderer. Her novels all relate to personal experience; as an artist she is attracted to the violent, the grotesque, and the macabre. She is a powerful comic writer, but her comedy is far from reflecting a shallow cheerfulness. Bringing a novelist's perspective to her material, in this 1989 book Doody shows an appreciation of the many dimensions of a predecessor's writings and she tells her story with force and conviction.