A review of A Most Clever Girl: How Jane Austen Discovered Her Voice, a phenomenal new picture book biography by Jasmine A. Stirling and Vesper Stamper. Enter the giveaway below to win a copy + more!
Note: the Amazon links in this post are affiliate links. Also, I partnered with The Children’s Book Review and the author Jasmine A. Stirling to bring you this review and giveaway. Review opinions are 100% my own.
We read a lot of books at our house, which means we always have a lot of books at our house. Picture bookshelves in every room of the house, plus stacks of books on nearly every flat surface. So, when I find my kids requesting and reading the same book over and over, I know we've found something special.
A Most Clever Girl is really something special!
This isn't the first picture book biography about Jane Austen, but it's certainly my favorite, if not the very best of the bunch. It begins with Austen's early life in the Steventon Rectory where she made her first attempts at satire and family theatrics. It's so fun to read about her wit and rebellious streak!
At its heart, this is a book about overcoming adversity and the joy of creativity. Stirling skillfully takes the reader through Austen's difficult years grieving the loss of her father, her childhood home, and her financial struggles. But, as Stirling emphasizes, Jane's period of loss and grief gave her the wisdom and depth she needed to achieve great heights. The book ends as she finds her voice and achieves literary success.
Our Review of A Most Clever Girl
This is a picture book for Jane Austen fans of ALL ages and a perfect introduction to the literary giant for children.
Stirling does a phenomenal job of telling Jane Austen's story with heart and skill. She expertly weaves Austen's own words in throughout the story and brings her to life on every page. Likewise, Stamper's illustrations perfectly compliment the story, making it resonate through every beautiful pastel-colored picture, inspired by textile shades that were popular in Austen's time period.
And the book itself is a work of art! From cover to cover, every single page (and even the endpapers!) are absolutely gorgeous.
As a Jane Austen fan myself, what I really appreciated about A Most Clever Girl was how both the author's and illustrator's love for the subject radiates throughout. All that love poured into the pages of these books is what truly makes A Most Clever Girl exceptional.
And, perhaps most importantly, this book is an absolute joy to read. I've read it countless times over the past month - to myself, to my kids - and it's a delight every single time.
Follow Jasmine on Instagram and Facebook @jasmine.a.stirling.author where she posts about kidlit and life with two young girls.
Also, you can follow Vesper Stamper on Instagram @vesperillustration and see more of her gorgeous work.
Enter for a chance to win a glorious Jane Austen-themed picnic basket, including a hardcover copy of A Most Clever Girl autographed by Jasmine A. Stirling!
One (1) grand prize winner receives:
A picnic basket filled with:
- A copy of A Most Clever Girl: How Jane Austen Discovered Her Voice, signed by author Jasmine A. Stirling
- A vintage teacup
- 1 oz of tea From Adagio Teas
- Truffles from Moonstruck Chocolates
- Gardenia hand cream
- A set of Jane Austen playing cards
- A $15 gift certificate to Jasmine A. Stirling’s Austenite Etsy Shop, Box Hill Goods
Two (2) winners receive:
A copy of A Most Clever Girl: How Jane Austen Discovered Her Voice, signed by author Jasmine A. Stirling
The giveaway begins March 16, 2021, at 12:01 A.M. MT, and ends April 16, 2021, at 11:59 P.M. MT.