Its difficult to write a review on this book without spoiling it for people who have yet to read it, but I can say that you need to read the authors explanation at the end before you start. You could believe that you are reading a true account from Anne Sharp about her famous friend as it is so believeable. However this book, although drawn from real historical documents and research is a novel. The author has been very clever in the way in which the 'facts' are presented but leaves enough leeway to make this a really enjoyable story. There are accusations, death's, downfalls, dances and holidays and as you travel with Miss Sharp on her heartbreaking friendship with Jane Austen and her family you can really believe that it is all true. I liked the suspense the author has created and at one point in the book, Anne Sharp is on the stairs in the dark watching an event unfold that could ruin the Austen family. My heart was in my mouth and I worried that if she did reveal all she has seen what would have become of her!! The friendship between Jane and Anne is a lovely story within itself and would have stood well enough on its own. As it is this novel is really a murder mystery (or is it???) with a whole host of family members in on the act. Deception, jealousy, bitterness, friendship, loyalty and family is all discussed here through the eyes of a one time tutor of Jane Austen's niece. Did any of it really happen, well the author seems to think so! I like to think that there is indeed more than a measure of truth in this story (even though the truth is rather macabre) and that Jane Austen left this earth as a talented and inspirational woman but also a woman who knew more than she was ever able to say about the goings on of her own nearest and dearest. Witty, funny, incredibly sad and intriguing this book has it all and more!!