Lucky him: the life of Kingsley Amis

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Peter Owen, Aug 1, 2001 - Biography & Autobiography - 432 pages
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Kingsley Amis always claimed that his fiction was not based on his life, and he worked hard and quite successfully at obscuring the autobiographical threads that run through his novels. But they exist, and Richard Bradford traces the channels between Amis's experiences, his states of mind, and his fictionalized versions of both. Bradford's biography shows that it is impossible to offer a comprehensive picture of Amis the man as husband, philanderer, friend, father, jester, son, boozer, agnostic, pseudo-socialist, and club-land Tory without also considering how each dimension of his life tested and extended his literary skills. Sometimes he remodeled the present, particularly during the 1950s when his books reflected his double life as family man and prolific libertine. He revisited the past in novels such as The Riverside Villas Murder, a detective story that tells us much about his early relationship with his father. Less frequently he took revenge, notably with his cruel parody of his second wife Elizabeth Jane Howard in Stanley and the Women. Readers of Amis's books often feel as if they have had a personal encounter with a shadowy presence behind the words, and Bradford's biography embodies this shadow.

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Lucky him: the biography of Kingsley Amis

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Kingsley Amis (1922-95) is best known in America for his comic novel Lucky Jim, written in 1954, which satirized British academic life and defined the Angry Young Men school of British postwar ... Read full review

Review: Lucky Him: The Life of Kingsley Amis

User Review  - KA Laity - Goodreads

I miss reading this book; I miss Kingsley Amis, the good years. This is an interesting biography because Bradford looks at Amis' books in terms of his life and shows how his fiction offers a more insightful memoir than his memoirs. Read full review

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Contents

List of Illustrations
9
Norbury
19
Oxford and Larkin
31
Copyright

22 other sections not shown

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About the author (2001)

Richard Bradford is professor of English at the University of Ulster. He previously has taught in the universities of Oxford, Wales and in Trinity College, Dublin. He has written 12 books on a variety of subjects, including two critical monographs of Kingsley Amis.

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