Anthony Burgess met his first wife Lynne at University and they married in 1942. They lived in England and Malaysia and Brunei, and a great deal of their leisure time was devoted to drinking and partying. Lynne became known for her outrageous and flirtatious behaviour. She is said to have insulted the Duke of Edinburgh at an official function. Burgess liked women and had discreet affairs (Lynne had indiscreet affairs) and five years before she died in 1968, he had met the Italian woman who became his second wife. It is said he would not divorce Lynne because he did not wish to offend his cousin George Dwyer the Roman Catholic Bishop of Leeds. Continue reading Anthony Burgess – Beard’s Roman Women
Having written a novel, The Master, based on several years in the life of Henry James, Colm Tóibín has now written a book based on the life of Thomas Mann, the German writer. The Magician takes its title from the name Mann’s children gave him, for his love of doing magic tricks to amuse small children. Being the Mann family, though, it wasn’t an altogether affectionate term; there was some element of denigration about it. Never was there a family with so much rivalry. Brother against brother, sister against brother, child against father. So the name The Magician, has elements of ‘You think you are a magician, above all the rest of us, but we know what you really are.’ Continue reading COLM TÓIBÍN -THE MAGICIAN
If Dickens remains immortal, it is, among other reasons, for his profound understanding of the inner child who remains with all of us until we die.
Casey Peabody has been writing her novel for six years. She won a two-week place in a writer’s workshop where she allowed herself to lose focus by falling for hard to get poet Luke. Continue reading Writers & Lovers-Lily King
Following on from the saga of Gert’s knee, here are some other body-part afflictions you may or may not know about: Continue reading Wittgenstein’s elbow
The wonderful Diana Athill has died on 23rd January of this year, calmly and quietly, the way she did most things, at the age of 101. Continue reading Vale Diana Athill