The Life of Kingsley Amis

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Vintage, 2007 - Novelists, English - 996 pages
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The eagerly-awaited authorized biography of Kingsley Amis.

In this, the authorized biography, Zachary Leader argues that Kingsley Amis was not only the finest comic novelist of his generation, but the dominant figure of post-war British writing.

Drawing not only on interviews with a range of Amis’s friends, relatives, fellow writers, students and colleagues, many of them never before consulted, but also on almost a thousand previously unpublished letters, Leader’s biography will for the first time give a full picture of Amis’s childhood, school-days, life as a teacher, critic, polemicist, professional author, husband, father and lover. He explores Amis’s fears and phobias, and the role that drink played in his life. And of course he pays due attention to Amis’s work.

As the editor of Kingsley Amis’s Letters (hailed in the Sunday Telegraph as “one of the last major monuments to the epistolary art”), Leader is more than qualified to be his authorized biographer. His book will surprise, entertain and illuminate.


From the Hardcover edition.

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The life of Kingsley Amis

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Leader's (English, Univ. of Roehampton, U.K.; editor,The Letters of Kingsley Amis ) biography of novelist, poet, essayist, and journalist Kingsley Amis (1922-95) was authorized by the subject's son ... Read full review

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Zachary Leader determined to have the final word on the life and work of one of Britain's most interesting and controversial literary figures, and his earlier edition of Kingsley Amis's correspondence ... Read full review

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About the author (2007)

Zachary Leader is Professor of English Literature at Roehampton University. His books include On Modern British Fiction (2002) and Revision and Romantic Authorship (1999). His editing of Kingley Amis's Letters was described as 'omniscient' by John Carey in the Sunday Times, 'wondrously thorough' by Ian Hamilton in the London Review of Books, and 'exemplary' by David Lodge in the Times Literary Supplement.

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