Kathryn Hughes

Unlikely Heroine

Take Courage: Anne Brontë and the Art of Life

By

Chatto & Windus 344pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

There has been a trend over the past fifteen years for what we might call ‘bibliomemoir’, a niche genre that mixes intimate confession with biography and literary criticism. The idea is that the narrator, a bookish type who has always felt a bit of an outsider, maps his or her off-kilter emotional career onto the literary texts that have helped him or her feel less, well, odd. Men have led the way in pulling off this hybrid form, but women have had some success too, most recently Rebecca Mead with The Road to Middlemarch. And now comes Samantha Ellis, whose Take Courage is a self-help book carved out of the slight writings and even more skeletal biography of Anne Brontë.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • sorry I can’t spell fluttering. I was agitated.,
    • Probably try and get an announcement out later, for all these male writers who think of fluttering inner muscle sheaths...,
    • He felt the muscles far inside her flutteriung around him,
    • Next week sees return, and we've got discounted tickets on offer, right here: ,
    • We're rarely topical - tricky as a monthly magazine - but we've an article this month all about Laurence Binyon, po… ,
    • "We will remember them" - who wrote those words, and why have them become our terms of memorial? ,
    • RT : Wow. We're over the moon with this stunning piece on My Cat Yugoslavia, 'a truly extraordinary novel.'… ,