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The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham


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The definitive biography of one of the twentieth century's greatest writers

About the Author

Selina Hastings is a writer and literary journalist who worked on the Daily Telegraph for fourteen years and subsequently became the literary editor for Harpers & Queen. She has published biographies of Nancy Mitford, Evelyn Waugh and Rosamond Lehmann. Her biography of Waugh won the Marsh biography prize.


This steady-eyed biography of an extraordinary, extravagant, generous and bitter artist will not only fascinate its readers but encourage some to go to his work for the first time - Times Literary Supplement, Jeremy TreglownHastings' Life of Maugham is pitch-perfect: supple, confident and written with something of the same beady detachment (and enjoyable signature streak of malice) as the great tale-teller himself - Nicholas Shakespeare, Daily TelegraphHastings provides a searing emotional history...her closing chapter...is so powerfully written, in places so shocking, as to give a series of physical jolts to the reader. Hastings's book cannot be bettered - Richard Davenport-Hines, Sunday TelegraphEvery so often, a biography appears of such authority and such power that it is more than a chronicle of a human life, it is a work of art...brilliant...such is Selina Hasting's skill that this horrible story is richly enjoyable - A. N. Wilson, Reader's DigestEngrossing . . . a brilliant evocation - Jackie Wullschlager, Financial TimesThe year's best biography by far - Sunday ExpressSelina Hastings has coped manfully with the task of summarising Maugham's huge oeuvre without distracting her readers from his long and eventful life - The Oldie'Supple, confident and written with the same beady detachment shown by the writer himself - Daily Telegraph

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