A Life on Our Planet
Sir David Attenborough
At the age of 94, Sir David Attenborough has spent a lifetime seeing, learning and experiencing the natural world. At first it was all a wild adventure, but over the years he became witness to an unfolding ecological tragedy. This is his personal testament and a call to arms for a new future.
Sybille Bedford: An Appetite for Life
If ever a person blazed their own path, it was Sybille Bedford. A bon viveur, she travelled extensively, seeking life and love, typewriter at the ready. Friends included Martha Gellhorn. Bruce Chatwin enthused over her writing. In An Appetite for Life, biographer Selina Hastings has created a magisterial portrait.
Fall of the House of Byron
Subtitled “Scandal and Seduction in Georgian England”, this is the story of the poet Lord Byron’s immediate ancestors. From aristocratic Newstead Abbey in rural Nottinghamshire to the gentlemen’s clubs of London and beyond, expect impropriety, elopement, murder, kidnapping and a near-death experience on the high seas.
To the End of the World: Travels with Oscar Wilde
In this, his third book of memoir, the acclaimed and much-loved actor tells the extraordinary ten-year story behind the film of Oscar Wilde’s last days. Characters, incidents, travels, celebrities and personal anecdotes all weave in and out of the main plot. Absorbing, thought-provoking and entertaining.
The Haunting of Alma Fielding: A True Ghost Story
Once again, Kate Summerscale, author of The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, introduces us to a remarkable biography: a young housewife – Alma Fielding – who, in suburban London 1938, as fascism stole across Europe, became the subject of a psychic research study. She was being haunted.
Russian Roulette: The Life and Times of Graham Greene
A restless traveller and witness to many of the key events of modern history, Graham Greene’s life story was as strange and compelling as those he told of Pinkie the Mobster et al. Drawing on a previously lost archive of letters, Russian Roulette is a deeply engaged biography, witty, sensitive and full of compassion.
Black Spartacus: The Epic Life of Toussaint Louverture
Toussaint Louverture is a colossus in world history: a slave who overturned the tables to lead an independent Haiti. Drawing on previously-unseen archival material and developing insightful new perspectives, Hazareesingh’s biography reveals an extraordinary and courageous life that continues to inspire us to this day.
Sylvia Pankhurst: Natural Born Rebel
Sylvia Pankhurst has been somewhat overshadowed by her mother Emmeline and sister Christabel. But as Holmes discovers in this fascinating biography, Sylvia – artist, writer, newspaper editor, feminist, internationalist and free-spirit – was perhaps the most revolutionary of them all.
Red Comet: The Short Life and Blazing Art of Sylvia Plath
Steeped in detail, wholly aware of cultural contexts, compassionate with regard to people’s motivations and having access to the poet’s letters: Clark’s portrait of Sylvia Plath as a spirited woman and artistic visionary is astonishingly refreshing – and a spectacular achievement.
Tom Stoppard: A Life
Who better to write the life of one of our greatest modern playwrights than one of our greatest modern biographers? Drawing on detailed conversations alongside all his writings, films and plays, Hermione Lee crafts a scintillating account of Tom Stoppard’s fascinating life.
Dutch Girl: Audrey Hepburn and World War II
There are many biographies of her, but few chronicle Audrey Hepburn’s wartime experience of the Nazi-occupied Netherlands. From her participation in the Dutch Resistance to working as a doctor’s assistant at Arnhem, Dutch Girl throws a new light on her Hollywood stardom.
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