I have waited for an affordable copy of this book for many years and I was not disappointed. Foot weaves the poetry of Shelley brilliantly into the social and political struggle of the early nineteenth century. He shows convincingly that Shelley was aware and had sympathy for the struggles of ordinary people. Like Foot, Shelley turned his back on his class and supported the campaigns for social justice by the emerging working class (and this was before Marx!).
I read *The Revolt of Islam* in 1966; I was seventeen years old and had been banned from school two years before. My teachers had not told me anything about this guy's poetry. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the poem was not about Islam but about the consequences of the French Revolution and the role of women in those consequences. I wish I had absorbed this more fully.
One small gripe is that there are several typos but these did not spoil my great enjoyment reading this book.
Finally, I wish to add that I met Paul Foot several times and he was one of the funniest people I have met. He died in 2004 and is sadly missed.
I first read this book many years ago and remain grateful to Paul Foot for rescuing Shelley from the condescension of the romantics, who tried to ignore what he felt was his more important thoughts. His thinking is being rediscovered again, and this is a thundering good introduction