In this largely autobiographical book Isherwood gives a fascinating account of the making of a writer. His story begins with the intellectual hothouse atmosphere of Cambridge in the early twenties: but it is his wickedly funny depiction of the Bohemian life of London, with thinly disguised portraits of many brilliant men - Auden and Stephen Spender among them - that is most intriguing. With his witty, appealing and sometimes outrageous pen Isherwood illuminates the society that created writers and thinkers who have shaped much of the twentieth century.
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(197mm x 127mm x 14mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication:
US Kirkus Review »
Published 10 years ago in England, there's a market here now that Isherwood has penetrated the American consciousness with his Berlin Stories, Prater Violet, and various translations. Chatty, pleasant and at times the English equivalent of zany, Isherwood follows his typical English education through "public school", three years at Cambridge, at the end of which he painfully plotted to have himself "sent down" and succeeded. Jobs as tutor, secretary to a string quartet, and always his writing and his friends filled the next years. Then in a neurotic frenzy of discouragement he enrolled as a medical student- which schooling proved worse than any literary fiasco (though his first book had just been published). With his decision to move to Berlin and continue his writing, came the beginning of assurance and growth in his literary career. Appeal largely to "snob audience"- as with previous books. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Christopher Isherwood
Christopher Isherwood (1904-1986) was one of the most celebrated writers of his generation. He left Cambridge without graduating, briefly studied medicine and then turned to writing his first novels, All the Conspirators and The Memorial. Between 1929 and 1939 he lived mainly abroad, spending four years in Berlin and writing the novels Mr Norris Changes Trains and Goodbye to Berlin on which the musical Cabaret was based. He moved to America in 1939, becoming a US citizen in 1946, and wrote another five novels, including Down There on a Visit and A Single Man, a travel book about South America and a biography of the Indian mystic Ramakrishna. In the late 1960s and '70s he turned to autobiographical works: Kathleen and Frank, Christopher and His Kind, My Guru and His Disciple and October, one month of his diary with drawings by Don Bachardy.