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Harold Pinter

Harold Pinter [Kindle Edition]

Michael Billington
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"'An outstandingly good book.' Independent 'I found it virtually unputdownable.' Financial Times"

Product Description

Michael Billington's engrossing biography examines Pinter's work in the context of his life. Through extended conversations with Pinter and interviews with his friends and colleagues, Billington creates a portrait of the man as well as the artist, from Pinter's Hackney childhood to his Nobel Prize, discussing his writing for stage and screen, as well as his fiction and poetry, his acting and directing, his political activity, his friendships, his two marriages and his passion for cricket. He emerges as a man of infinite complexity whose imaginative world is shaped by his private character.

This new edition includes a full transcript of the Nobel lecture, as well as an additional chapter written in the aftermath of Harold Pinter's death in December 2008.

'The foremost representative of British drama in the second half of the twentieth century.'

The Swedish Academy citation on awarding Harold Pinter the Nobel Prize for Literature, 2005

'Enthralling... An open-sesame into Pinter's work... A valuable book. And absorbing: I found it virtually unputdownable.' Financial Times

'No reader of this book will doubt that its subject is a man of the highest artistic stature.' Sunday Telegraph

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2617 KB
  • Print Length: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber Non Fiction; New edition edition (5 Feb 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0033XLTS8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #214,264 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Michael Billington, theatre critic for The Guardian for as long as anyone can remember, was well-placed to set Pinter in a left-wing, theatrical context far removed from the absurdist, psychoanalytical tack taken by critics such as Martin Esslin. Pinter himself offered full co-operation with the writing of this book, and consequently it is full of fascinating, previously unknown information. Hitherto extremely reticent - not to say defensive - about what inspired his work, here Pinter revealed how many of his great plays evolved from incidents in his life and, in the case of his 1978 play Betrayal, divulged information sizzling enough to make the front page of at least one Sunday newspaper. Always a thoughtful writer, Billington's suspicion of the vague or grandoise makes for clarity of argument and helps to demystify somewhat this most mysterious of writers. The faults of the book are the unsophisticated, clod-hopping prose and the fact that his understandable admiration for Pinter is wholly unleavened by critical detachment. Nevertheless, this is an essential text for anyone studying Pinter's work.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fine book about a great man. 30 Jan 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Michael Billington clearly idolises Harold Pinter - and at the end of his marvellous book so did I. To the view that Pinter is the finest writer in the English language of the post-war era I would already have subscribed - but having read this remarkable analysis of his life as well as his works I am now in no doubt that his importance goes beyond even that. For Pinter has a consistency and integrity which combined with his scintillating intelligence, is very rare. From the impoverished eighteen-year-old refusing National Service to the grand old man of the Arts with a Nobel Prize he has not wavered. He believes in the truth at all times, is a stalwart fighter against hypocrisy and lies and has never deviated from the confidence always to say what he believes to be right. Pinter's Art promotes his principles often in so subtle a way that you cannot be offended - but his political views are so muscular and uncompromising that they may give offence - and we are all the better for that!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best biogs I've ever read 23 Jun 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Absolutely love this book! Written with careful attention and scrupulous research it is also a great read, carrying the reader along and never dragging. I really appreciated the level of detail and the engaging style - it;s a long book but never dry. I never felt like putting it down. I really enjoy Billington's insights into Pinter's works, particularly things like films and TV productions which I was born too late to see. He creates a real affinity between the reader and subject early on by bringing to life Pinter's childhood/youth. Definitely one to read as an introduction to Pinter's works.
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