The Assassin's Cloak: An Anthology of the World's Greatest Diarists

Front Cover
Irene Taylor, Alan F. Taylor
Canongate, 2000 - Literary Collections - 684 pages
23 Reviews
This remarkable anthology includes entries from more than 170 diarists and is the most wide-ranging and comprehensive ever compiled. Ten years in the making, The Assassin's Cloak pays tribute to a fascinating genre that is at once the most intimate and public of all literary forms.

The scope of The Assassin's Cloak is peerless and international, and appropriately it begins with Samuel Pepys, the Shakespeare of all diarists. It reaches across the centuries with several diary excerpts for every day of the year and along the way we meet cads and charmers, sailors and psychopaths, rock stars and prima ballerinas, gossips, drunks, snobs, lechers, and lovers. There is humor and tragedy, history and the humdrum, often recorded on the same day or in the same entry.

The diarists are likewise diverse, including John Steinbeck, Leo Tolstoy, Sylvia Plath, Andy Warhol, Franz Kafka, Virginia Woolf, Evelyn Waugh, Anne Frank, Joseph Goebbels, Che Guevara, Dawn Powell, and Queen Victoria. Imprinted on the minds of the editors were the words of "Chips" Channon, one of the twentieth century's greatest diarists. "What is more dull than a discreet diary?" he asked, before supplying his own answer: "One might as well have a discreet soul."

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Review: The Assassin's Cloak: An Anthology of the World's Greatest Diarists

User Review  - Elizabeth Webber - Goodreads

What a great idea for a book! I've been reading the dates in the book on the current date. It really engages my imagination to think of people writing on the same date in years past. Read full review

Review: The Assassin's Cloak: An Anthology of the World's Greatest Diarists

User Review  - Roddy - Goodreads

This was one of those strange coincidences. I had just finished reading William Soutar's "Diary of a Dying Man" and found this anthology in a charity shop. It wasn't until I took it home and read the ... Read full review

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