ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Elizabeth von Arnim was famous for bestselling books such as Elizabeth and her German Garden, Vera and The Enchanted April, where attaining happiness was a major theme. Born in Kirribilli in 1866, she grew up in England, married a German count, then Bertrand Russell’s older brother Frank, and enjoyed many dalliances. She was pretty, witty and charismatic, but unconventionally put herself first. Carey decided Elizabeth could teach her something about happiness, so researched her life and re-read her novels. A warm blend of biography and book review. After this, you’ll want to read Elizabeth’s books for yourself! Lindy Jones
'When I discovered Elizabeth von Arnim, I found, for the first time, a writer who wrote about being happy.'
Elizabeth von Arnim is one of the early 20th century's most famous - and forgotten -authors. Born in Sydney in the mid 1800s, she went on to write many internationally bestselling novels, marry a Prussian Count and then an English Lord, nurture close friendships with H.G. Wells and E.M. Forster and raise five children.
Her novels were ahead of their time in their representation of women and their pursuit of happiness. Intrigued by von Arnim's extraordinary life and vibrant career, Gabrielle Carey sets off on a literary and philosophical journey to know more about this talented author.
From the Prime Minister's Literary Award
winner of Moving Among Strangers
, Only Happiness Here is part biography, part memoir and part reflection on human nature's obsession with finding joy.