Follow Jenny's contributions - in the Guardian, the Times Literary Supplement, the New York Review of Books or through her blog in the NYR Daily

Her most recent review - New York Review of Books (September 2017) a review of James Delbourgo, Collecting the World: Hans Sloane and the Origins of the British Museum.

Her latest book - published in October 2017, Mr Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense - longlisted for the Baillie-Gifford Prize


Jenny will be talking about Edward Lear at the following events:


Saturday 7th October: BBC History Weekend, Winchester


Sunday 8th October: Borderlines Book Festival, Carlisle


Friday 13th October: Cheltenham Literary Festival


Saturday 14th October: Thame Arts and Literature Festival


Thursday 9th November: Daunt Books, Marylebone, London


Friday 10th November: Ways with Words, Southwold


Tuesday 5th December: Faber Members evening, London




2nd-4th March: Aldeburgh Literary Festival


7th-8th April: Cambridge Literary Festival

Mr Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense

We know Edward Lear as a genius of nonsense, full of shocks and surprises, and as a poet of strange loves: the Owl and the Pussy Cat, the Duck and the Kangaroo. We may know him too, for his astounding paintings of parrots and owls, or for his luminous landscapes. But do we know that he taught Queen Victoria to draw, travelled alone across the wild Albanian mountains, or waded through muddy fields with Tennyson? Lear lived all his life on the borders of rules and structures, of disciplines and desires. Children adored him and adults loved him, yet somehow he was always alone. This beautiful volume, a fresh and joyful appreciation, follows Lear from his troubled childhood to his striving as an artist, tracking his swooping moods, passionate friendships and restless travels. And, as we follow him, his ‘nonsenses’ are elegantly unpicked - without losing any of their fun.

Published 5 October 2017

You can order Mr Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense now through Faber and Faber or through Amazon ISBN-1: 9780571269549






Publicity, Kate Burton,, +44.207.927.3887


Agent, Gill Coleridge,, contact Matthew Turner', +


Publicity., +1 212.741.6900 :: Agent, Melanie Jackson,

Website by