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The Perfect Stranger (Lives & letters) Paperback – 20 Jul 1995

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Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Carcanet Press Ltd; New edition edition (20 July 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857541782
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857541786
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.5 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 354,903 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description


'To hear the truth so devastatingly and yet so joyfully encountered is rare in an age where autobiography has been flattened by the massed weight of political and public reminiscence. This autobiography, from its beginning to its bitter end, is a celebration of joy: joy in youth, in woman, in male camaraderie, in the struggle of art, in married love.' Times Literary Supplement --Times Literary Supplement

About the Author

P.J. KAVANAGH was born in England in 1931. Wounded in the Korean war, he later went to Oxford. He has worked as a lecturer, actor, broadcaster and columnist and has written novels, two volumes of autobiography and essays, and edited anthologies. His name is closely associated with the poetry of Ivor Gurney, a seminal edition of whose work he prepared in 1982. Carcanet publish two books of his poems and The Perfect Stranger.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By A. du Plessis on 23 Jun. 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A beautifully written, deeply felt and honest memoir, now at last reissued after years out of print.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 1 review
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Love's mysteries, that no one can explain 12 May 2000
By bossa_nova - Published on
Format: Paperback
This slim volume recounts the author's young life, and his struggle to find the meaning of existence. When he met Sally, everything became suddenly clear. The author says this is not an autobiography, but the story of a rescue: he talks about himself only to explain what he was rescued from. He tries to express something which cannot be expressed directly, but only as if 'to be seen out of the corner of the eye'. So the reader may be disappointed that he says so little about his great love. The book ends abruptly with Sally's early and sudden death.
It is good to have evidence that perfect love and perfect happiness are possible on this earth, though given to very few.
You can read more about Sally in Rosamond Lehemann's 'The Swan in the Evening'.
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