Sense and Sensibility was the author’s first novel to be published, although not her first to be written and completed.
The plot centres on the Dashwood sisters and their romantic suitors, Edward Ferrars, John Willoughby and Colonel Brandon. The novel begins with Mrs Dashwood and her three daughters being removed from their home after Mr Dashwood dies and the property is left to his son John from his first marriage. Fanny, John’s wife, a cold, calculating woman, has a brother Edward, who comes to stay with the family and develops a rapport with Elinor, before they are separated by circumstances. Meanwhile, Marianne meets the charming and dashing Willoughby and enters into a passionate relationship with him.