Top positive review
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Best book I've read this year
on 6 October 2007
I had heard of Thomas Bewick, and had seen the occasional woodcut (especially of his rightly-famous birds), so I was delighted when this biography by Jenny Uglow came out From page one, Uglow makes Bewick come alive. Apart from a short, unhappy spell in London as a young man, Bewick lived all his long life in Northumberland, growing up in a small village and first learning, then perfecting , his trade in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. He comes over as a dedicated artist, a devoted family man and a loyal friend. Yet Uglow doesn't sugarcoat him-his faults and weaknesses are here too.
I can't imagine how this biography could be bettered. Excellent lively writing, extensive research, fascinating subject living in a fascinating period of history (late C18th-early C19th ). The text is accompanied by engravings and, of course, by some of Bewick's own woodcuts.