Dylan Thomas: A New Life Paperback – 1 Jul 2004
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Andrew Lycett [brings] lots of fresh, carefully researched detail to the boozy and sex-obsessed private life. (SUNDAY TELEGRAPH (4.7.04))
Untapped archives and tireless research have shed a fresh light on the short life of literary sensation Dylan Thomas...This biography...is a tragic yet compelling read. (DAILY EXPRESS (.9.7.04))
[an] enjoyable biography...often very funny. (SUNDAY TIMES (11.7.04))
[Lycett] succeeds in painting a surprisingly sympathetic picture of the man. (Simon Shaw MAIL ON SUNDAY (22.8.04))
The definitive biography of the poet who was almost as notorious for his 'rock 'n roll' lifestyle as his artistic workSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Lycett understands and clarifies what seem to be the important components of Dylan Thomas's life - his "Welshness" (or not), his poetry, his relationships, particularly with Caitlin, his drinking, his sexual behavior (or not), and his response to America (and vice versa). And as with his previous masterworks, Lycett puts it all into its social and historical context. Even I - who has not, till now, been a great reader of poetry - found his analyses of the poetry highly seductive. And in so many ways Dylan Thomas comes across as a highly contemporary - and relevant - figure.
This book is beautifully and fluidly written, and it puts Andrew Lycett in the very top class of biographers.
The genius of Lycett's book, it seems to me, is that his research enables him to take us there, literally day by day, to follow an extraordinary life. Lycett also adds his own wry comments, never harsh but always illuminating, as though he, in fact, were one of that raucous, happy and sad crowd who knew they were experiencing a special, yet impossible being. Some of the stories about Dylan's behaviour keep me laughing out loud. The sadnesses move me to tears. And, above all, is the beauty of Dylan's words. My favourite poem in English, with plenty of runners up,(Donne especially, whom I think Dylan appreciated), has long been 'Fern Hill' and 'Under Milk Wood' can only grow upon one every time of reading, or, better still, listening. Lycett lets us know how these masterpieces came about. The photographs are also wonderfully revealing. Can you beat the one on the cover?
A further strength of Lycett's assessment is his placing Dylan in the contemporary and historical context of English poetry, something of which Dylan was very aware. Although, I hesitate at this point, because Dylan Thomas was not simply (?) a poet. Lycett shows how many talents he had in other fields, especially screen writing & broadcasting &, above all, his effect on others who were in his presence & who usually loved him.
As a family therapist myself, I also admire the way that Lycett has sought to reveal the influence upon Dylan of life at his parents' lovely address, over the years ... the teenaged Rimbaud.
We can all learn so much from this wonderful book.
' ... though I sang in my chains like the sea'.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Here we have an excellent example of the sort of obsessive literary pedantry that the lives of certain "stellar" artists seems to attract. Read morePublished on 11 Nov. 2012 by Mr Venus
The latest of biographies about this great poet and playwright is a fulfilling read. There is always a new facet of Dylan's life and work to be found in this book. Read morePublished on 24 Oct. 2012 by Carlo Chinca