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Claire Tomalin

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Claire Tomalin was born in London in 1933 of a French father and an English mother, and was educated at Newnham College, Cambridge. She has worked in publishing and journalism all her life, becoming literary editor first of the New Statesman and then of the Sunday Times, which she left in 1986.

She is also the author of The Life and Death of Mary Wollstonecraft, which won the Whitbread First Book Prize for 1974; Shelley and His World (reissued by Penguin in 1992); Katherine Mansfield: A Secret Life (Penguin 1988), a biography of the modernist writer on whom she also based her 1991 play The Winter Wife; the highly-acclaimed The Invisible Woman: The Story of Nelly Ternan and Charles Dickens (Penguin 1991), which won the NCR Book Award for 1991, as well as the Hawthornden Prize and the 1990 James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Biography; and Mrs Jordan's Profession (Penguin 1995), a study of the Regency actress. Other books written for Penguin are: Jane Austen: A Life and a collection of memoirs entitled Several Strangers.