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Philip Larkin: Selected Letters Paperback – 25 Oct 1993
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Philip Larkin: Selected Letters presents a selection of Larkin's astonishingly frank and entertaining correspondence, whether with literary figures like Kingsley Amis and John Betjeman, or with his more intimate personal friends.
About the Author
Philip Larkin was born in Coventry in 1922 and was educated at King Henry VIII School, Coventry, and St John's College, Oxford. As well as his volumes of poems, which include The Whitsun Weddings and High Windows, he wrote two novels, Jill and A Girl in Winter, and two books of collected journalism: All What Jazz: A Record Diary, and Required Writing: Miscellaneous Prose. He worked as a librarian at the University of Hull from 1955 until his death in 1985. He was the best-loved poet of his generation, and the recipient of innumerable honours, including the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry, and the WHSmith Award.
As one of Philip Larkin's chosen literary executors, Anthony Thwaite edited the Collected Poems, Selected Letters and Further Requirements. His own Collected Poems, drawing on fifty years work, was published in 2007.
Top Customer Reviews
So, to start with, Larkin's youthful letters are a delight, as he is keen to impress others with his intelligence and his profound discoveries of the world around him. With JB Sutton, he becomes intimate as with no other, and reveals his profoundest worries, amidst much DH Lawrence worship, but gets stuck in this vein. With Kingsley Amis he is matey, blokish and hard-swearing. With Robert Conquest later on, even more so (with additional pornographic interest). The main biographical interest in this book will be, I suppose, his letters to the women in his life. To Monica, his main lover and companion (and his intellectual equal), he is profound, honest and self-castigating, whereas with Maeve (his "love") he is far more generous, tender and much less self-concerned. Things start to alter in the 1960s, though, as he starts to sour, and his letters to Amis and a former school friend Colin Gunner become almost staggering outpourings of vitriolic bile.Read more ›