A champion of civil rights and a leading light in India's struggle for independence, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was one of the iconic figures of the 20th century.
He is best remembered for continually challenging British supremacy through acts of non-violent civil disobedience, and he willingly subjected himself to prison for his beliefs. But he was a complex and controversial man, someone whose behaviour in his personal life - especially as a father and a husband - was often at odds with his own teachings.
A master of conflict resolution, he was adept at forging alliances with his fiercest critics, yet he could be uncompromising in his treatment of family members and loyal followers.
This intimate pictorial biography unpicks the nuances of Gandhi's life and character, charting his evolution from fun-loving schoolboy to the man revered throughout India as the 'Father of the Nation'.
Drawing on contemporary accounts and a myriad letters, documents, illustrations and photographs - including many which have rarely, if ever, been published - it reveals a man of contradictions, a fascinating personality whose complexities are sometimes obscured by the enormity of his achievements.
'Your letters are a great pleasure. I lap them down with breakfast and they do me more good than tonics, blood capsules or iron jelloids' Lytton Strachey
Dora Carrington was considered an outsider to Bloomsbury, but she lived right at its heart. Known only by her surname, she was the star of her year at the Slade School of Fine Art, but never achieved the fame her early career promised. For over a decade she was the companion of gay writer Lytton Strachey, and killed herself, stricken without him, when he died in 1932. She was also a prolific and exuberant correspondent.
Carrington was not consciously a pioneer or a feminist, but in her determination to live life according to her own nature - especially in relation to her work, her passionate friendships and her fluid attitude to sex, gender and sexuality - she fought battles that remain familiar and urgent today. She was friends with the greatest minds of the day and her correspondence stars a roster of fascinating characters - Virginia Woolf, Vanessa Bell, Rosamund Lehmann, Maynard Keynes to name but a few.
Carrington's Letters introduces the maverick artist and electric personality to a new generation for the first time with exclusive correspondence never before published. Unmediated, passionate, startlingly honest and very playful, reading Carrington's letters is like having her whisper in your ear and embrace you gleefully.
Mary Shelley, Emily Bronte George Eliot, Olive Shreiner, Virginia Woolf: five writers who wrote influential novels which still powerfully resonate with readers today.
All of them lost their mothers at young ages, and with no close female role model they had to invent their own idea of womanhood. This group biography links their creativity to their outsider status, and how each was able to create their own identities, in life and literature. Deeply researched, thoughtful and revealing.
We have long known their individual greatness but in linking their creativity to their lives as outsiders, this group biography throws new light on the genius they share. 'Outsider', 'outlaw', 'outcast': a woman's reputation was her security and each of these five lost it. As writers, they made these identities their own, taking advantage of their separation from the dominant order to write their novels.
All five were motherless. With no female model at hand, they learnt from books; and if lucky, from an enlightened man; and crucially each had to imagine what a woman could be in order to invent a voice of their own. They understood female desire: the passion and sexual bravery in their own lives infused their fictions.What they have in common also is the way they inform one another, and us, across the generations. Even today we do more than read them; we listen and live with them.
Lyndall Gordon's biographies have always shown the indelible connection between life and art: an intuitive, exciting and revealing approach that has been highly praised and much read and enjoyed. She names each of these five as prodigy, visionary, outlaw, orator and explorer and shows how they came, they saw and left us changed.
Over the course of five decades, Jann Wenner has put an indelible stamp on American culture. As founding editor of Rolling Stone, Wenner and his trailblazing magazine came to embody the freewheeling excesses of the sixties, shaping and reporting on a countercultural narrative that still exists today. As a subject, however, Wenner has proved controlling and elusive, successfully avoiding the inquiries of biographers and resisting biography… until now. In Joe Hagan’s long-awaited bombshell – Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine – Wenner opens up his personal and professional life to the scrutiny of a biographer/journalist for the first time. Sticky Fingers is based on Hagan’s extensive interviews with Wenner and on original source reporting, and it draws from Wenner’s vast archive of correspondence and rare documents, items that have never been made available to a journalist before.
In Sticky Fingers, Hagan reports on the mercurial editor by securing on-the-record interviews with iconic subjects who know Wenner well, including Mick Jagger, Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Bono, Art Garfunkel, Elton John, Cameron Crowe, Keith Richards, Pete Townsend, Yoko Ono, Lorne Michaels, Michael Douglas, Billy Joel, Bette Midler, David Geffen, Tom Wolfe, Annie Leibovitz, and Danny Fields, among others. Their candid and revealing comments depict the extremes Wenner has been willing to visit in pursuit of both pleasure and success, and help to explain how Rolling Stone became a locus of power and influence and headline-making news, from Altamont to Fear and Loathing to the University of Virginia rape case.
Hagan also reports on the legendary excesses that have defined Rolling Stone, unearthing stunning revelations about the private lives and secret histories of the principals in Wenner’s orbit – among them Hunter S. Thompson, Annie Leibovitz, John Lennon, Mick Jagger, and a Hall-of-Fame cast of rock ‘n’ rollers (Wenner himself is not spared). Many dramas at the heart of contemporary music history, including feuds over money (Wenner with Lennon), confrontations over coverage (Wenner with Dylan), secret deals and pacts (Wenner with Jagger), epic infidelities and sex triangles (including love affairs that nearly destroyed Rolling Stone), tempestuous relationships that led to stunning betrayals, and drug overdoses that nearly resulted in death, are told in these pages for the very first time.
Sticky Fingers gives readers a nuanced portrait of a man who helped define a generation, and provides an explosive chronicle of an era.
In the 1880s, Suzanne Valadon was considered the Impressionists' most beautiful model. But behind her captivating facade lay a closely-guarded secret. Born in poverty in rural France, as a teenager Suzanne began, in Montmartre, posing for - and having affairs with - some of the age's most renowned painters. Then Renoir caught her indulging in a passion she had been trying to conceal: the model was herself a talented artist. Some found her vibrant still lifes and frank portraits as shocking as her bohemian lifestyle. At eighteen, she gave birth to an illegitimate child, future painter Maurice Utrillo. But her friends Toulouse-Lautrec and Degas could see her skill. Rebellious and opinionated, she refused to be confined by tradition or gender, and in 1894, her work was accepted to the Salon de la Societe Nationale des Beaux-Arts, an extraordinary achievement for a working-class woman with no formal art training. Renoir's Dancer tells the remarkable tale of an ambitious, headstrong woman fighting to find a professional voice in a male-dominated world.
Leonardo. Illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, easily distracted, and at times heretical. Isaacson weaves a narrative that connects his art to his science, based on thousands of pages from Leonardo’s astonishing notebooks and new discoveries about his life and work. He shows how Leonardo’s genius was based on skills we can improve in ourselves, such as passionate curiosity, careful observation and imagination. His life reminds us of the importance of instilling, in ourselves and our children, received knowledge and a willingness to question it - to be imaginative and to think different.
'To read this magnificent biography of Leonardo da Vinci is to take a tour through the life and works of one of the most extraordinary human beings of all time in the company of the most engaging, informed, and insightful guide imaginable. Walter Isaacson is at once a true scholar and a spellbinding writer. And what a wealth of lessons there are to be learned in these pages.' David McCullough
Based on thousands of pages from Leonardo's astonishing notebooks and new discoveries about his life and work, Walter Isaacson weaves a narrative that connects his art to his science. He shows how Leonardo's genius was based on skills we can improve in ourselves, such as passionate curiosity, careful observation, and an imagination so playful that it flirted with fantasy. He produced the two most famous paintings in history, The Last Supper and the Mona Lisa. But in his own mind, he was just as much a man of science and technology.
With a passion that sometimes became obsessive, he pursued innovative studies of anatomy, fossils, birds, the heart, flying machines, botany, geology, and weaponry. His ability to stand at the crossroads of the humanities and the sciences, made iconic by his drawing of Vitruvian Man, made him history's most creative genius. His creativity, like that of other great innovators, came from having wide-ranging passions. He peeled flesh off the faces of cadavers, drew the muscles that move the lips, and then painted history's most memorable smile. He explored the math of optics, showed how light rays strike the cornea, and produced illusions of changing perspectives in The Last Supper.
Isaacson also describes how Leonardo's lifelong enthusiasm for staging theatrical productions informed his paintings and inventions. Leonardo's delight at combining diverse passions remains the ultimate recipe for creativity. So, too, does his ease at being a bit of a misfit: illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, easily distracted, and at times heretical.
His life should remind us of the importance of instilling, both in ourselves and our children, not just received knowledge but a willingness to question it-to be imaginative and, like talented misfits and rebels in any era, to think different.
The bestselling memoir by France's president, Emmanuel Macron.
Some believe that our country is in decline, that the worst is yet to come, that our civilisation is withering away. That only isolation or civil strife are on our horizon. That to protect ourselves from the great transformations taking place around the globe, we should go back in time and apply the recipes of the last century.
Others imagine that France can continue on its slow downward slide. That the game of political juggling — first the Left, then the Right — will allow us breathing space. The same faces and the same people who have been around for so long.
I am convinced that they are all wrong. It is their models, their recipes, that have simply failed. France as a whole has not failed.
In Revolution, Emmanuel Macron, the youngest president in the history of France, reveals his personal story and his inspirations, and discusses his vision of France and its future in a new world that is undergoing a ‘great transformation’ that has not been known since the Renaissance.
This is a remarkable book that seeks to lay the foundations for a new society — a compelling testimony and statement of values by an important political leader who has become the flag-bearer for a new kind of politics.
From New York Times bestselling author Amy Tan, a memoir on her life as a writer, her childhood and the symbiotic relationship between fiction and emotional memory.
In Where the Past Begins, bestselling author of The Joy Luck Club and The Valley of Amazement Amy Tan is at her most intimate in revealing the truths and inspirations that underlie her extraordinary fiction. By delving into vivid memories of her traumatic childhood, confessions of self-doubt in her journals, and heartbreaking letters to and from her mother, she gives evidence to all that made it both unlikely and inevitable that she would become a writer. Through spontaneous storytelling, she shows how a fluid fictional state of mind unleashed near-forgotten memories that became the emotional nucleus of her novels.
Tan explores shocking truths uncovered by family memorabilia - the real reason behind an I.Q. test she took at age six, why her parents lied about their education, mysteries surrounding her maternal grandmother - and, for the first time publicly, writes about her complex relationship with her father, who died when she was fifteen. Supplied with candour and characteristic humour, Where the Past Begins takes readers into the idiosyncratic workings of her writer's mind, a journey that explores memory, imagination, and truth, with fiction serving as both her divining rod and link to meaning.
The must-read new memoir from one of psychiatry's most important figures.
Irvin D. Yalom has made a career of investigating the lives of others. In this profound memoir, he turns his writing and his therapeutic eye upon himself. He opens his story with a nightmare - He is twelve, and is riding his bike past the home of an acne-scarred girl. Like every morning, he calls out, hoping to befriend her, 'Hello, Measles!' But in his dream, the girl's father makes Yalom understand that his daily greeting has hurt her. For Yalom, this was the birth of empathy; he would not forget the lesson.
As Becoming Myself unfolds, we see the development of the compassionate and insightful thinker whose books have been a beacon to so many. This is not simply one man's life story - Yalom's reflections on his life and growth are an invitation for us to reflect on the origins of our own selves and the meanings of our lives.
Alexei Sayle reveals his true vocation: proprietor of an imaginary sandwich shop. Blending politics, comedy, philosophy and memoir, this is the Godfather of Alternative Comedy at his most anarchic and irresistibly entertaining Alexei Sayle has been telling people he runs a sandwich bar on Gray's Inn Road that doesn't exist since the mid-1970s
.From behind this imaginary counter Alexei dispenses wisdom and focaccia to his famous customers as he explores his love of pretending, reveals why he disappeared from our TV screens in the 1990's, lobbies for eleven-hour long episodes of Newsnight and discusses rampant nepotism in coveted careers. And from drawing striking comparisons between capitalism and all-you-can-eat buffets to discussing the hidden depths of Taylor Swift, this flight of fancy packs a surprising punch and will leave you hungry for more.
This memoir spans Marina Abramovic's five decade career, and tells a life story that is almost as exhilarating and extraordinary as her groundbreaking performance art. Taking us from her early life in communist ex-Yugoslavia, to her time as a young art student in Belgrade in the 1970s, where she first made her mark with a series of pieces that used the body as a canvas, the book also describes her relationship with the West German performance artist named Ulay who was her lover and sole collaborator for 12 years. Abramovic has collaborated with stars from Lady Gaga to Jay-Z, James Franco and Willem Dafoe. Best known for her recent pieces 'The Artist is Present' and '512 Hours', this book is a fascinating insight into the life of one of the most important artists working today, and the woman who has been described as 'the grandmother of performance art'.
'Urgent and supremely eloquent... In Shock is a book to set alongside the likes of Being Mortal by Atul Gawande, Direct Red by Gabriel Weston and, of course, Paul Kalanithi's When Breath Becomes Air' The BooksellerAt seven months pregnant, intensive care doctor Rana Awdish suffered a catastrophic medical event, haemorrhaging nearly all of her blood volume and losing her unborn first child. She spent months fighting for her life in her own hospital, enduring multiple major surgeries and a series of organ failures. Every step of the way, Awdish was faced with something even more unexpected and shocking than her battle to survive- her fellow doctors' inability to see and acknowledge the pain of loss and human suffering, the result of a self-protective barrier hard-wired in medical training. In Shock is Rana Awdish's searing account of her extraordinary journey from doctor to patient, during which she sees for the first time the dysfunction of her profession's disconnection from patients and the flaws in her own past practice as a doctor. Shatteringly personal yet wholly universal, it is both a brave roadmap for anyone navigating illness and a call to arms for doctors to see each patient not as a diagnosis but as a human being.
Following the phenomenally successful Writing Home and Untold Stories, Keeping On Keeping On contains Bennett's diaries 2005 to 2015, reflecting on a decade that saw four premieres at the National Theatre, a West End double-bill transfer, and the films of The History Boys and The Lady in the Van. There's a provocative sermon against private education, a passionate defence of the public library, a radio play and a screenplay, introductions and eulogies. An unforgettable record of life according to the inimitable Alan Bennett.
Clement Attlee was the Labour prime minister who presided over Britain's radical postwar government, delivering the end of the Empire in India, the foundation of the NHS and Britain's place in NATO. Called 'a sheep in sheep's clothing', his reputation has long been that of an unassuming character in the shadow of Churchill. But as John Bew's revelatory biography shows, Attlee was not only a hero of his age, but an emblem of it; and his life tells the story of how Britain changed over the twentieth century. Here, Bew pierces Attlee's reticence to examine the intellect and beliefs of Britain's greatest - and least appreciated - peacetime prime minister. This edition includes a new preface by the author in response to the 2017 general election.
Step into a world of gloriously unpredictable characters such as Ivor Cutler, Quentin Crisp, Joe Orton, Reginald Bray, Ken Campbell, Screaming Lord Sutch, Sun Ra, Buckminster Fuller, Timothy Leary and Ayn Rand.
The Odditorium is a playful re-telling of history, told not through the lens of its victors, but through the fascinating stories of a wealth of individuals who, while lesser-known, are no less remarkable.
Throughout its pages you'll learn about the antics and adventures of tricksters, eccentrics, deviants and inventors. While their stories range from heroic failures to great hoaxes, one thing unites them - they all carved their own path through life. Each protagonist exemplifies the human spirit through their dogged determination, willingness to take risks, their unflinching obsession and, often, a good dollop of eccentricity.
Learn about Reginald Bray (1879-1939), a Victorian accountant who sent over 30,000 singular objects through the mail, including himself; Muriel Howorth (1886-1971), the housewife who grew giant peanuts using atomic energy; and Elaine Morgan (1920-2013), a journalist who battled a tirade of prejudice to pursue an aquatic-based theory of human evolution, which is today being championed by David Attenborough.
While many of us are content to lead a conventional life, with all of its comfort and security, The Odditoriumreminds us of the characters who felt compelled to carve their own path, despite risking ostracism, failure, ridicule and madness. Outsider artists, linguists, scientists, time travellers and architects all feature in The Odditorium, each of whom risked ostracism, ridicule and even madness in pursuit of carving their own esoteric path, changing the world in wonderful ways.
As former Prime Minister and our longest-serving Chancellor, Gordon Brown has been a guiding force for Britain and the world over three decades. This is his candid, poignant and deeply relevant story.
In describing his upbringing in Scotland as the son of a minister, the near loss of his eyesight as a student and the death of his daughter within days of her birth, he shares the passionately held principles that have shaped and driven him, reminding us that politics can and should be a calling to serve. Reflecting on the personal and ideological tensions within Labour and its achievements - the minimum wage, tax credits, Bank of England independence and the refinancing of the National Health Service - he describes how to meet the challenge of pursuing a radical agenda within a credible party of government.
He explains how as Chancellor he equipped Britain for a globalised economy while swimming against the neoliberal tide and shows what more must be done to halt rising inequality. In his behind-the-scenes account of the financial crisis and his leading role in saving the world economy from collapse, he addresses the question of who was to blame for the crash and why its causes and consequences still beset us.
From the invasion of Iraq to the tragedy of Afghanistan, from the coalition negotiations of 2010 to the referendums on Scottish independence and Europe, Gordon Brown draws on his unique experiences to explain Britain's current fractured condition. And by showing us what progressive politics has achieved in recent decades, he inspires us with a vision of what it might yet achieve today.
Riveting, expert and highly personal, this historic memoir is an invaluable insight into our times.
The sizzling diaries of Tina Brown's eight spectacular years as editor in chief of Vanity Fair paint a riveting portrait of the flash, dash and follies of the eighties in New York and Hollywood.
The Vanity Fair Diaries is the story of an Englishwoman barely out of her twenties who arrives in New York City with a dream. Summoned from London in hopes that she can save Conde Nast's troubled new flagship VANITY FAIR, Tina Brown is immediately plunged into the maelstrom of the competitive New York media world and the backstabbing rivalries at the court of the planet's slickest, most glamour-focused magazine company. She survives the politics, the intrigue and the attempts to derail her by a simple stratagem: succeeding. In the face of rampant skepticism, she triumphantly reinvents a failing magazine.
Here are the inside stories of Vanity Fair scoops and covers that sold millions - the Reagan kiss, the meltdown of Princess Diana's marriage to Prince Charles, the sensational Annie Leibovitz cover of a gloriously pregnant, naked Demi Moore. In the diary's cinematic pages, the drama, the comedy, and the struggle of running an 'it' magazine come to life. Brown's Vanity Fair Diaries is also a woman's journey, of making a home in a new country and of the deep bonds with her husband, their prematurely born son, and their daughter.
Astute, open-hearted, often riotously funny, Tina Brown's The Vanity Fair Diaries is a compulsively fascinating and intimate chronicle of a woman's life in a glittering era.
'At its heart, this book is a furious missive from the frontline of the David and Goliath battle between small business owners and the accumulated forces of late capitalism. If you had any remaining doubts about the evils of Amazon, this book will lay them to rest ... Bythell is a true believer, who makes a passionate case for the importance of books - real, paper-and-board books, yellowed by time and handled, smudged and annotated by generations. This is, after all, a man who shot a Kindle and wall-mounted it - and after reading his wonderfully entertaining book, I'm just about ready to follow suit.' - ObserverShaun Bythell owns The Bookshop, Wigtown - Scotland's largest second-hand bookshop. It contains 100,000 books, spread over a mile of shelving, with twisting corridors and roaring fires, and all set in a beautiful, rural town by the edge of the sea. A book-lover's paradise? Well, almost ... In these wry and hilarious diaries, Shaun provides an inside look at the trials and tribulations of life in the book trade, from struggles with eccentric customers to wrangles with his own staff, who include the ski-suit-wearing, bin-foraging Nicky. He takes us with him on buying trips to old estates and auction houses, recommends books (both lost classics and new discoveries), introduces us to the thrill of the unexpected find, and evokes the rhythms and charms of small-town life, always with a sharp and sympathetic eye.
A native Brooklynite-turned-suburban commuter deemed the quintessential New Yorker, Roz Chast has always been intensely alive to the glorious spectacle that is Manhattan - the daily clash of sidewalk racers and dawdlers; the fascinating range of dress codes; and the priceless, nutty outbursts of souls from all walks of life.
For Chast, adjusting to life outside the city was surreal - (you can own trees!' you have to drive!') - but she recognized that the reverse was true for her kids. On trips into town, they would marvel at the strange visual world of Manhattan - its blackened sidewalk gum-wads, "those West Side Story-things" (fire escapes) - and its crazily honeycombed systems and grids.
Told through Chast 's singularly zany, laugh-out-loud, touching, and true cartoons, Going Into Town is part New York stories (the "overheard and overseen" of the island borough), part personal and practical guide to walking, talking, renting, and venting - an irresistible, one-of-a-kind love letter to the city.
The story of Emma and Carl Jung's highly unconventional marriage, their relationship with Freud, and their part in the early years of Psychoanalysis.
Emma Jung was clever, ambitious and immensely wealthy, one of the richest heiresses in Switzerland when, aged seventeen, she met and fell in love with Carl Jung, a handsome, penniless medical student. Determined to share his adventurous life, and to continue her own studies, she was too young to understand Carl’s complex personality or conceive the dramas that lay ahead.
Labyrinths tells the story of the Jungs’ unconventional marriage, their friendship and, following publication of Jung’s The Psychology of the Unconscious, subsequent rift with Freud. It traces Jung’s development of word association, notions of the archetype, the collective unconscious, the concepts of extraversion and introversion and the role played by both Carl and Emma in the early development of the scandalous new Psychoanalysis movement.
In its many twists and turns, the Jung marriage was indeed labyrinthine and Emma was forced to fight with everything she had to come to terms with Carl’s brilliant, complex character and to keep her husband close to her. His belief in polygamy led to many extra-marital affairs including a menage a trois with a former patient Toni Wolff that lasted some thirty years. But the marriage endured and Emma realised her ambition to become a noted analyst in her own right.
Garsington Revisited, a new book updating the legend of the flamboyant benefactor of the arts, Lady Ottoline Morrell. This book by Sandra Jobson Darroch is a revised edition of her original biography of Ottoline first published in 1976 by Chatto & Windus and later in paperback. As well as being updated, the book contains hitherto unpublished information about Ottoline's "skeletons in her cupboard" as David Garnett called them. The book also includes a selection of vignettes or Interludes about the extraordinary people Sandra met and places she went to in the course of her years of research.
After reading a preview copy of Garsington Revisited, the eminent biographer, Sir Michael Holroyd, wrote: "It's a book of real originality. All I can say is that it deserves both hands with their "Thumbs up!". With many congratulations, Michael."
Sandra was fortunate to meet and interview the last living members of the Bloomsbury Group, enjoying lunch at Charleston with Duncan Grant, and offered a ship's tumbler of sherry by that other great Bloomsburyan, David Garnett. Sandra was stalked by the 7th Duke of Portland in the grounds of Welbeck Abbey, and journeyed to Texas to read more than 8,000 letters to Ottoline written by a "Who's Who" of Britain's literary and artistic elite (including 2,500 letters from her most persistent lover, Bertrand Russell, who was besotted with Ottoline).
The book casts a new light on Ottoline's friendship with D.H. Lawrence and their falling-out after he portrayed her in Women in Love. Four decades on from her original book, which she wrote when still in her twenties, Sandra is as impressed as ever by Ottoline's courage and determination to forgo the comfortable life of an aristocrat to mix with - and champion - some of the 20th century's leading artists and writers.
Bestselling novelist Tatiana de Rosnay pays homage to Daphne du Maurier, the writer who influenced her deeply, in this startling and immersive new biography. A portrait of one writer by another, Manderley Forever meticulously recounts a life as mysterious and dramatic as the work it produced, and highlights du Maurier's consuming passion for Cornwall. We meet Daphne as a shy seven-year-old, and follow her through her rebellious teens, her early years as a writer, the complexities of her marriage and her cantankerous old age. With a rhythm and intimacy to its prose characteristic of all de Rosnay's works, Manderley Forever is a vividly compelling portrait and celebration of an intriguing, hugely popular and (at the time) critically underrated writer.
For over twenty years, people turned to A. A. Gill's columns every Sunday - for his fearlessness, his perception, and the laughter-and-tear-provoking one-liners - but mostly because he was the best. 'By miles the most brilliant journalist of our age', as Lynn Barber put it. This is the definitive collection of a voice that was silenced too early but that can still make us look at the world in new and surprising ways.
In the words of Andrew Marr, A..A. Gill was 'a golden writer'. There was nothing that he couldn't illuminate with his dazzling prose. Wherever he was - at home or abroad - he found the human story, brought it to vivid life, and rendered it with fierce honesty and bracing compassion. And he was just as truthful about himself. There have been various collections of A. A. Gill's journalism - individual compilations of his restaurant and TV criticism, of his travel writing and his extraordinary feature articles. This book will collect examples of the very best of his work: the peerlessly funny criticism, the extraordinarily knowledgeable food writing, assignments throughout the world, and reflections on life, love, and death.
Drawn from a range of publications, including the Sunday Times, Vanity Fair, Tatler and Australian Gourmet Traveller, The Ivy Cookbook and his books on England and America, it will be by turns hilarious, uplifting, controversial, unflinching, sad, funny and furious.
The epic wisdom contained in a lost library helps the author turn his life around
John Kaag is a dispirited young philosopher at sea in his marriage and his career when he stumbles upon West Wind, a ruin of an estate in the hinterlands of New Hampshire that belonged to the eminent Harvard philosopher William Ernest Hocking. Hocking was one of the last true giants of American philosophy and a direct intellectual descendent of William James, the father of American philosophy and psychology, with whom Kaag feels a deep kinship. It is James's question "Is life worth living?" that guides this remarkable book.
The books Kaag discovers in the Hocking library are crawling with insects and full of mold. But he resolves to restore them, as he immediately recognizes their importance. Not only does the library at West Wind contain handwritten notes from Whitman and inscriptions from Frost, but there are startlingly rare first editions of Hobbes, Descartes, and Kant. As Kaag begins to catalog and read through these priceless volumes, he embarks on a thrilling journey that leads him to the life-affirming tenets of American philosophy-self-reliance, pragmatism, and transcendence-and to a brilliant young Kantian who joins him in the restoration of the Hocking books.
Part intellectual history, part memoir, American Philosophy is ultimately about love, freedom, and the role that wisdom can play in turning one's life around.
The two central activities in my life - alongside writing - have been readingand gardening.
Penelope Lively has always been a keen gardener. This book is partly a memoir of her own life in gardens: the large garden at home in Cairo where she spent most of her childhood, her grandmother's garden in a sloping Somerset field, then two successive Oxfordshire gardens of her own, and the smaller urban garden in the North London home she lives in today. It is also a wise, engaging and far-ranging exploration of gardens in literature, from Paradise Lost to Alice in Wonderland, and of writers and their gardens, from Virginia Woolf to Philip Larkin.
In 1994, Nelson Mandela became the first president of democratic South Africa.
Five years later, he stood down. In that time, he and his government wrought the most extraordinary transformation, turning a nation riven by centuries of colonialism and apartheid into a fully functioning democracy in which all South Africa's citizens, black and white, were equal before the law.
Dare Not Linger is the story of Mandela's presidency, drawing heavily on the memoir he began to write as he prepared to finish his term as president, but was unable to finish. Now, the acclaimed South African writer, Mandla Langa, has completed the task using Mandela's unfinished draft, detailed notes that Mandela made as events were unfolding and a wealth of previously unseen archival material. The result is a vivid and often inspirational account of Mandela's presidency years in which he overcame the challenges of transition and made a reality of his cherished vision for a liberated South Africa.
From New York Times bestselling author Joyce Maynard, a memoir about discovering strength in the midst of great loss - "heart wrenching, inspiring, full of joy and tears and life." (Anne Lamott)
In 2011, when she was in her late fifties, beloved author and journalist Joyce Maynard met the first true partner she had ever known. Jim wore a rakish hat over a good head of hair; he asked real questions and gave real answers; he loved to see Joyce shine, both in and out of the spotlight; and he didn 't mind the mess she made in the kitchen. He was not the husband Joyce imagined, but he quickly became the partner she had always dreamed of.
Before they met, both had believed they were done with marriage, and even after they married, Joyce resolved that no one could alter her course of determined independence. Then, just after their one-year wedding anniversary, her new husband was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. During the nineteen months that followed, as they battled his illness together, she discovered for the first time what it really meant to be a couple - to be a true partner and to have one.
This is their story. Charting the course through their whirlwind romance, a marriage cut short by tragedy, and Joyce 's return to singleness on new terms, The Best of Us is a heart-wrenching, ultimately life-affirming reflection on coming to understand true love through the experience of great loss.
'Telling my story of first, surviving genocide and then, as a captive of ISIS is not easy, but people must know.' The remarkable and courageous story of Nadia Murad, a twenty-three-year-old Yazidi woman who is working with Amal Clooney to challenge the world to fight ISIS on behalf on her people.
With a foreword by Amal Clooney.
A Nobel Peace Prize nominee and the first Goodwill Ambassador the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking of the United Nations and winner of the Vaclav Havel Human Rights Prize, Nadia Murad is a courageous young woman who has endured unimaginable tragedy (losing eighteen members of her family) and degradation through sexual enslavement to ISIS. But she has fought back.
This inspiring memoir takes us from her peaceful childhood in a remote village in Iraq through loss and brutality to safety in Germany. Courage and testimony can change the world: this is one of those books.
The essential read for any fan and scholar of Sylvia Plath.
This comprehensive edition of Sylvia Plath's letters is a work of immense scholarship and care, presenting a complete and historically accurate text of the known and extant letters Plath wrote to over one hundred and twenty correspondents, including Ted Hughes.
This edition reproduces previously unseen photographs, and a gathering of Plath's own beautiful line drawings taken from the letters she sent to her friends and family, which offer the reader generous insight into the life of one of our most significant poets.
In this humorous and moving memoir, Michael Rosen recalls the first twenty-three years of his life. Born in the North London suburbs, his parents, Harold and Connie, both teachers, first met as teenage Communists in the 1930s Jewish East End. The family home was filled with stories of relatives in London, the United States and France and of those who had disappeared in Europe. Unlike the children around them, Rosen and his brother Brian grew up dreaming of a socialist revolution; Party meetings were held in the front room, summers were for communist camping holidays, till it all changed after a trip to East Germany, when in 1957 his parents decided to leave the Party. Michael followed his own journey of radical self-discovery: running away to the Aldermaston March to ban the bomb, writing and performing in experimental political theatre, getting arrested during the 1968 movements.
Throughout her prodigious life, activist and lawyer Pauli Murray systematically fought against all arbitrary distinctions in society, channeling her outrage at the discrimination she faced to make America a more democratic country. In this definitive biography, Rosalind Rosenberg offers a poignant portrait of a figure who played pivotal roles in both the modern civil rights and women's movements.
A mixed-race orphan, Murray grew up in segregated North Carolina before escaping to New York, where she attended Hunter College and became a labor activist in the 1930s. When she applied to graduate school at the University of North Carolina, where her white great-great-grandfather had been a trustee, she was rejected because of her race. She went on to graduate first in her class at Howard Law School, only to be rejected for graduate study again at Harvard University this time on account of her sex. Undaunted, Murray forged a singular career in the law. In the 1950s, her legal scholarship helped Thurgood Marshall challenge segregation head-on in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education case.
When appointed by Eleanor Roosevelt to the President's Commission on the Status of Women in 1962, she advanced the idea of Jane Crow, arguing that the same reasons used to condemn race discrimination could be used to battle gender discrimination. In 1965, she became the first African American to earn a JSD from Yale Law School and the following year persuaded Betty Friedan to found an NAACP for women, which became NOW. In the early 1970s, Murray provided Ruth Bader Ginsburg with the argument Ginsburg used to persuade the Supreme Court that the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution protects not only blacks but also women - and potentially other minority groups - from discrimination. By that time, Murray was a tenured history professor at Brandeis, a position she left to become the first black woman ordained a priest by the Episcopal Church in 1976.
Murray accomplished all this while struggling with issues of identity. She believed from childhood she was male and tried unsuccessfully to persuade doctors to give her testosterone. While she would today be identified as transgender, during her lifetime no social movement existed to support this identity. She ultimately used her private feelings of being "in-between" to publicly contend that identities are not fixed, an idea that has powered campaigns for equal rights in the United States for the past half-century.
When a young Princess Elizabeth met and fell in love with the dashing Naval Lieutenant Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, it wasn't without its problems. The romance between the sailor prince and the young princess brought a splash of colour to a nation still in the grip of post-war austerity. When they married in Westminster Abbey in November 1947, there were 3000 guests, including six kings and seven queens.
Within five years, as Queen Elizabeth II, she would ascend to the throne and later be crowned in front of millions watching through the new medium of television. Throughout her record-breaking reign, she relied on the formidable partnership she had made with her consort. Now, after 70 years of their marriage, acclaimed royal biographer Ingrid Seward sheds new light on their relationship and its impact on their family and on the nation.
In My Husband and I, we discover the challenges faced by Prince Philip as he has had to learn to play second fiddle to the Queen in all their public engagements, but we also get a revealing insight into how their relationship operates behind closed doors. As the years have gone by, there have been rumours of marital troubles, fierce debates over how to bring up their children, and they have had to deal with family traumas - from scandalous divorces to shocking deaths - in the full glare of the public eye.
But somehow, their relationship has endured and provided a model of constancy to inspire all around them. This book is not only a vivid portrait of a hugely important marriage, it is a celebration of the power of love.
A Sunday Times Top 10 Bestseller As one of the best biographers of her generation, Claire Tomalin has written about great novelists and poets to huge success: now, she turns to look at her own life.
This enthralling memoir follows her through triumph and tragedy in about equal measure, from the disastrous marriage of her parents and the often difficult wartime childhood that followed, to her own marriage to the brilliant young journalist Nicholas Tomalin. When he was killed on assignment as a war correspondent she was left to bring up their four children - and at the same time make her own career.
She writes of the intense joys of a fascinating progression as she became one of the most successful literary editors in London before discovering her true vocation as a biographer, alongside overwhelming grief at the loss of a child.
Writing with the elan and insight which characterize her biographies, Claire Tomalin sets her own life in a wider cultural and political context, vividly and frankly portraying the social pressures on a woman in the Fifties and Sixties, and showing 'how it was for a European girl growing up in mid-twentieth-century England ... carried along by conflicting desires to have children and a worthwhile working life.'
A beautifully illustrated, literary appreciation of Edward Lear - best-known for his poem 'The Owl and the Pussycat' - and his 'nonsenses' by one of Britain's most highly regarded historians.
Edward Lear's poems follow and break the rules. They abide by the logic of syntax, the linking of rhyme and the dance of rhythm, and these 'nonsenses' are full of joy - yet set against darkness. Where do these human-like animals and birds and these odd adventures - some gentle, some violent, some musical, some wild - come from? His many drawings that accompany his verse are almost hyper-real, as if he wants to free the creatures from the page. They exist nowhere else in literature, springing only from Lear's imagination.
Lear lived all his life on the borders of rules and structures, of disciplines and desires. He vowed to ignore politics yet trembled with passionate sympathies. He depended on patrons and moved in establishment circles, yet he never belonged among them and mocked imperial attitudes. He loved men yet dreamed of marriage - but remained, it seems, celibate, wrapped in himself. Even in his family he was marginal, at once accepted and rejected. Surrounded by friends, he was alone.
If we follow him across land and sea - to Italy, Greece and Albania, to The Levant and Egypt and India - and to the borderlands of spirit and self, art and desire, can we see, in the end, if the nonsense makes sense? This is what Jenny Uglow has set sail to find out.
Eleanor Roosevelt is considered by many to be the most fascinating, accomplished, and admired woman in American history. While she is best known as a politician, diplomat, humanitarian, UN delegate, activist, feminist, and First Lady she was also a prolific reporter and writer who changed the role of women in government.Roosevelt wrote twenty-seven books, more than 8,000 columns, and over 555 articles. She received an average of 175,000 letters a year while she served as first lady and delivered more than 75 speeches a year.Organized into sections like by sections like Becoming Eleanor Roosevelt, On Women, Diversity and Democracy, and the UN and Human Rights, In Her Words: Eleanor Roosevelt collects the most fascinating writings from her life including historical documents like the Universal Human Declaration of Rights, relevant commentary on sexism, racism, and immigration, intimate letters to Lorena Hickock and others, and witty self-help. Illustrated with dozens of photographs and documents, this is the perfect gift for history buffs, feminist, social activists, and anyone who is curious about the Roosevelt family.
Selected as a Book of the Year 2016 in The Times and Evening Standard. Karl Ove Knausgaard is sitting at home in SkOne with his wife, four small children and a dog. He is watching football on TV and falls asleep in front of the set. He likes 0-0 draws, cigarettes, coffee and Argentina.Fredrik Ekelund is away, in Brazil, where he plays football on the beach and watches matches with friends. Fredrik loves games that end up 4-3 and teams that play beautiful football. He likes caipirinhas and Brazil.In Home and Away, two creative writers use football and the 2016 World Cup in Brazil to reflect on life and death, art and politics, class and literature. This engrossing book gives us insight into their lives and asks what does it mean to be at home in a globalised world?
Mark Nicholas's personal journey through cricket reveals why it really is the world's beautiful game.
Mark Nicholas, anchor for Channel Nine's commentary team in Australia and Channel 5's Cricket on Five show in the UK, has a unique knowledge of and perspective on the world of cricket.
As both a former player and now a professional observer and commentator, he knows all the key figures in the sport and has witnessed first-hand some of cricket's greatest moments. From epic Test matches and titans of the game like Lara, Warne and Tendulkar to his own childhood love for the sport, Mark gives us his informed, personal and fascinating views on cricket - and shows us exactly why cricket really is the world's beautiful game.