Cover of Emma Brown
|Author(s)||Clare Boylan, Charlotte Brontë|
 Original manuscript
Brontë began work on Emma Brown in 1853. Her marriage in 1854 and the lukewarm enthusiasm of her husband for the project may have contributed to her slow progress towards completion. The manuscript was left unfinished at her death in 1855.
The original twenty-page manuscript consists of two chapters describing the arrival of an apparently wealthy young girl, "Matilda Fitzgibbon", at an expensive private school. It transpires that her identity is fake, and that her school fees will not be paid. The child is unable to answer any questions as to her true identity.
 Boylan's completion
Boylan "steeped herself in letters and writings" and acknowledged the assistance of several notable Brontë scholars in her afterword to the novel. Boylan developed the story as a mystery novel, using two characters from Brontë's original chapters who work together to solve the puzzle of the eponymous girl's identity - Mrs. Chalfont, a widow introduced as a narrator in the manuscript, and Mr. Ellin, a lawyer who accepts the challenge the girl represents.
The novel was favourably reviewed but was not regarded as a faithful continuation of the style and voice of Brontë. Boylan's Telegraph obituary concluded that she "conveyed little of the deep moral and theological framework that underpinned Charlotte Brontë's writing."
- Seymour, Miranda (2 May 2004). "'Emma Brown': Reader, She Finished It". New York Times. Retrieved 3 June 2010.[dead link]
- Miller, Lucasta (13 September 2003). "Reader, she married him". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
- Demanski, Laura (13 April 2004). "Author picks up where Brontë left off". News-Herald (Arizona). p. 6. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
- "Clare Boylan, Obituary". Telegraph. 18 May 2006. Retrieved 3 June 2010.