Robert Morrison - The English Opium-Eater - Orion Publishing Group

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • E-Book £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9780297858607
    • Publication date:17 Dec 2009

The English Opium-Eater

A Biography of Thomas De Quincey

By Robert Morrison

  • Paperback
  • £14.99

Definitive life of the author of CONFESSIONS OF AN ENGLISH OPIUM-EATER, journalist, political commentator and biographer.

Definitive life of the author of CONFESSIONS OF AN ENGLISH OPIUM-EATER, journalist, political commentator and biographer.

Thomas De Quincey's friendships with leading poets and men of letters in the Romantic and Victorian periods - including William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Thomas Carlyle - have long placed him at the centre of 19th-century literary studies. De Quincey also stands at the meeting point in the culture wars between Edinburgh and London; between high art and popular taste; and between the devotees of the Romantic imagination and those of hack journalism. His writing was a tremendous influence on Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Dickens, William Burroughs and Peter Ackroyd.

De Quincey is a fascinating (and topical) figure for other reasons too: a self-mythologizing autobiographer whose attitudes to drug-induced creativity and addiction strike highly resonant chords for a contemporary readership. Robert Morrison's biography passionately argues for the critical importance and enduring value of this neglected essayist, critic and biographer.

Biographical Notes

Robert Morrison is recognised as a world-class scholar of Romantic and Victorian literature. He is the editor of the OUP edition of De Quincey's essays 'On Murder' and co-editor of a collection of new essays on De Quincey (Routledge).

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780753827895
  • Publication date: 11 Nov 2010
  • Page count: 488
  • Imprint: W&N
Robert Morrison's biography is astute and revealing, quarrying new sources. — John Carey, Sunday Times 22.11.09
I knew that I was on to a good thing with ths book before the page numbers were even out of roman numerals... This was a lively life, and this is a lively life... — Sam Leith, The Spectator 5.12.09
Morrison writes... with a combination of perspicacity and generous puzzlement... Thanks to Morrison... The life is clearer than it has ever been. — James Purdon, The Observer 6.12.09
Robert Morrison's biography is impressive, the first biography of De Quincey in almost thirty years, and is the first to use all his published and unpublished works. — Tom Paulin, The Literary Review Dec 09
The time was ripe for a new biography and Morrison has done his man proud. This is an exceptionally well-balanced account. — Jonathan Bate, Book of the Week - Sunday Telegraph - 13.12.09
Morrison provides a compelling survey of De Quincey's work as a biographer, satirist, economist, political commentator, translator, linguist and classicist. — Duncan Wu, The Independent 08.01.10 - Book of the Week
a book which is full of insight and careful reasoning... Morrison does a superb job of literary detection going through a life of lies, procrastination and deceit, and teasing out whatever truth there is to be had. — Jad Adams, The Guardian 09.01.10
This isn't a debunking biography, just a properly sceptical one, and it's clear that Morrison's enthusiasm for the man and his writings does not obscure his judgement. — Suzi Feay, The Tablet 04.03.10
Orion

Being John Lennon

Ray Connolly
Authors:
Ray Connolly
Gollancz

Lud-In-The-Mist

Hope Mirrlees
Authors:
Hope Mirrlees

Lud-in-the-Mist - a prosperous country town situated where two rivers meet: the Dawl and the Dapple. The latter, which has its source in the land of Faerie, is a great trial to Lud, which had long rejected anything 'other', preferring to believe only in what is known, what is solid. Nathaniel Chanticleer is a somewhat dreamy, slightly melancholy man, not one for making waves, who is deliberately ignoring a vital part of his own past; a secret he refuses even to acknowledge. But with the disappearance of his own daughter, and a long-overdue desire to protect his young son, he realises that something is changing in Lud - and something must be done. Lud-in-the-Mist is a true classic, an adult fairy tale exploring the need to embrace what we fear and to come to terms with 'the shadows' - those sweet and dark impulses that our public selves ignore or repress.

W&N

The Story of Britain

Roy Strong
Authors:
Roy Strong

THE CLASSIC HISTORY OF BRITAIN, FULLY UPDATEDRoy Strong has written an exemplary introduction to the history of Britain, as first designated by the Romans. It is a brilliant and balanced account of successive ages bound together by a compelling narrative which answers the questions: 'Where do we come from?' and 'Where are we going?'Beginning with the earliest recorded Celtic times, and ending with the present day of Brexit Britain, it is a remarkable achievement. With his passion, enthusiasm and wide-ranging knowledge, he is the ideal narrator. His book should be read by anyone, anywhere, who cares about Britain's national past, national identity and national prospects. Richly enjoyable, The Story of Britain will inform and enlighten readers as to how we arrived at where we are today - and why.

Orion Spring

Emotional Resilience

Harry Barry
Authors:
Harry Barry
Orion

Together

Julie Cohen
Authors:
Julie Cohen

A poignant, surprising love story told backwards over five decades, with a devastating secret at its heart.Robbie and Emily they have been together for decades. Now, their joints are creaking and their eyesight is failing - but their love for each other is as fresh and fierce as the day they first met. They have had children and grandchildren, lived full and happy and intimate lives.But they have been keeping a secret since the day they met, when their lives changed forever. Over the years, the sacrifices and choices they made have sealed their fates together. Did they do the right thing? Read their story, and you decide.Perfect for fans of Ruth Hogan, Gail Honeyman and Sarah Winman and anyone looking for a thought-provoking page-turner.*****Praise for Julie Cohen's TOGETHER:'Julie Cohen's writing is powerful, moving and truly beautiful' Joanna Cannon, author of The Trouble with Goats and Sheep 'This big, clever, tender and twisty love story reminded me of One Day & The Time Traveler's Wife' Erin Kelly, author of He Said, She Said'A bold, breathtaking and truly compelling love story, one that will stay with me for a long time' Lisa Jewell, author of Then She Was Gone'It takes a lot to tempt me from crime, but this is one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking stories I've read' Emma Flint, author of Little Deaths 'Complex, compelling and beautiful, Together is the kind of novel that will stay with you forever' Rowan Coleman, author of The Summer of Impossible Things'Cleverly-plotted and stunningly written, Julie Cohen's Together is a page-turner with real emotional punch' Catherine Isaac, author of You, Me, EverythingShortlisted for the Contemporary Romantic Novel Award 2018 with the Romantic Novelists' Association.

W&N

Gainsborough

James Hamilton
Authors:
James Hamilton

** Selected as a Book of the Year in The Times, Sunday Times and Observer **'Compulsively readable - the pages seem to turn themselves' John Carey, Sunday Times 'Brings one of the very greatest [artists] vividly to life' Literary Review Thomas Gainsborough lived as if electricity shot through his sinews and crackled at his finger ends. He was a gentle and empathetic family man, but had a volatility that could lead him to slash his paintings, and a loose libidinous way of speaking, writing and behaving that shocked many deeply. He would be dynamite in polite society today.In this exhilarating new biography - the first in decades - James Hamilton reveals Gainsborough in his many contexts: the easy-going Suffolk lad, transported to the heights of fashion by a natural talent; the rake-on-the-make in London, learning his art in the shadow of Hogarth; falling on his feet when he married a duke's daughter with a handsome private income; the top society-portrait painter in Bath and London who earned huge sums by bringing the right people into his studio; the charming and amusing friend of George III and Queen Charlotte who nevertheless kept clear of the aristocratic embrace.There has been much art history written about this chameleon of art, but with fresh insights into original sources, Gainsborough: A Portrait transforms our understanding of this fascinating man, and enlightens the century that bore him.

W&N

Pour Me

A.A. Gill
Authors:
A.A. Gill

SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2016 PEN ACKERLEY PRIZE'An intense, succulent read that's intermittently dazzling' THE TIMES'Chilling, exquisitely moving' DAILY TELEGRAPH'A superb memoir - and one of the best books on addiction I have ever read' EVENING STANDARDA. A. Gill's memoir begins in the dark of a dormitory with six strangers. He is an alcoholic, dying in the last-chance saloon. He tells the truth - as far as he can remember it - about drinking and about what it is like to be drunk. He recalls the lost days, lost friends, failed marriages ... But there was also an 'optimum inebriation, a time when it was all golden'.Sobriety regained, there are painterly descriptions of people and places, unforgettable musings about childhood and family, art and religion; and most movingly, the connections between his cooking, dyslexia and his missing brother. Full of raw and unvarnished truths, exquisitely written throughout, POUR ME is about lost time and self-discovery. Lacerating, unflinching, uplifting, it is a classic about drunken abandon.

W&N

Evelyn Waugh

Philip Eade
Authors:
Philip Eade

BOOK OF THE WEEK on BBC Radio 4, a GUARDIAN, SUNDAY TIMES and FINANCIAL TIMES Book of the Year and a Waterstones.com Best Biography of 2016'A brisk, lively and wonderfully entertaining account of the life of a strange, tormented, unique creature' JOHN BANVILLE, NEW YORK REVIEW OF BOOKS'Excellent ... read this book' LITERARY REVIEW'An exemplary piece of work' DAILY MAIL'The best single-volume life of the author available' IRISH TIMESEvelyn Waugh was described by Graham Greene as 'the greatest novelist of my generation', yet reckoned by Hilaire Belloc to have been possessed by the devil.Waugh's literary reputation has continued to rise since Greene's assessment in 1966. Fifty years on from his death, Philip Eade takes a fresh look at this famously complex character and tells the full story of his dramatic, colourful and frequently bizarre life: his strained relationship with his sentimental father and blatantly favoured elder brother, and the burning ambition they provoked in him; his formative homosexual love affairs at Oxford; his disastrous first marriage and subsequent conversion to Roman Catholicism; his unrequited love for the brightest of the bright young people; his complex interest in the aristocracy and what the aristocrats made of him; his insane bravery yet chequered wartime career; his drug-induced madness; his strangely successful second marriage; his unconventional attitude to his six children; his sharp tongue; his devastating wit; the love, fear and loathing that he variously inspired.Scrupulously researched and sympathetically written, this is a sparkling and compelling new biography of one of the greatest writers of the twentieth century - and one of England's most mythologised eccentrics.

Gateway

Trips to the Moon

Lucian
Authors:
Lucian

The endeavour of small Greek historians to add interest to their work by magnifying the exploits of their countrymen and piling wonder upon wonder, Lucian first condemned in his "Instructions for Writing History," and then caricatured in his "True History," wherein is contained the account of a trip to the moon.

W&N

Rudyard Kipling

Andrew Lycett
Authors:
Andrew Lycett

Paragon of English virtues or racist imperialist? Andrew Lycett (acclaimed biographer of Ian Fleming) has returned to primary sources to tell the intricate story of a misunderstood genius who became Britain's most famous and highest earning author. Among the many new sources, Lycett has discovered previously unpublished letters that illuminate Kipling's crucial years in India, his first girlfriend (the model for Mrs Hauksbee of Plain Tales from the Hills), his parents' decision to send him back to England to boarding school; and in his adult life his use of opium, his frustrating times in London and the brief peace he found in America before the devastating loss of both his young daughter and, in the First World War, his son. Lycett also uncovers the extraordinary story of Kipling's great love for Flo Garrard, daughter of the crown jeweller, and unravels the complicated yet enthralling saga of the American family the Balestiers, and of Carrie Balestier who became Kipling's wife. This biography is full of new material on Kipling's financial dealings with Lord Beaverbrook, his friendships with T.E. Lawrence, the painter Edward Burne-Jones and the Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin (who was his cousin).

W&N

William S. Burroughs

Barry Miles
Authors:
Barry Miles

Authoritative biography of cult writer and author of NAKED LUNCH, William Burroughs (1914-1997).It has been 50 years since Norman Mailer asserted, 'I think that William Burroughs is the only American novelist living today who may conceivably be possessed by genius.' This assessment holds true today. No-one since then has taken such risks in their writing, developed such individual radical political ideas, or spanned such a wide range of media - Burroughs has written novels, memoirs, technical manuals and poetry, he has painted, made collages, taken thousands of photographs, made visual scrapbooks, produced hundreds of hours of experimental tapes, acted in movies and recorded more CDs than most rock groups.Made a cult figure by the publication of NAKED LUNCH, Burroughs was a mentor to the 1960s youth culture. Underground papers referred to him as 'Uncle Bill' and he ranked alongside Bob Dylan and the Beatles, Buckminster Fuller and R.D. Laing as one of the 'gurus' of the youth movement who might just have the secret of the universe.Based upon extensive research, this biography paints a new portrait of Burroughs, making him real to the reader and showing how he was perceived by his contemporaries in all his guises - from icily distant to voluble drunk. It shows how his writing was very much influenced by his life situation and by the people he met on his travels around America and Europe. He was, beneath it all, a man torn by emotions: his guilt at not visiting his doting mother; his despair at not responding to reconciliation attempts from his father; his distance from his brother; the huge void that separated him from his son; and above all his killing of his wife, Joan Vollmer.

Orion

Love Becomes a Funeral Pyre

Mick Wall
Authors:
Mick Wall
Orion

Storm

Tim Minchin
Authors:
Tim Minchin

A storm is brewing in the confines of a London dinner party. Small talk quickly descends into a verbal and intellectual battle between science and belief, as comedian Tim goes head to head with the mysterious fifth guest at the table - a hippy named Storm.With stunning original artwork, Tim's sublime ranty beat-poem weaves through the world we live in, where alternative medicine is given credence and public funding, psychics have primetime TV exposure and people are happy with mystery rather than answers.While Storm herself may not be converted, audiences from London to Sydney have been won over by Tim's lyrical wonders and the timely message of the piece in a society where science is attacked as the enemy of belief. STORM is the illustrated book born from the acclaimed internet sensation - the animation that has become an anthem for critical thinking worldwide, attracting over three million views. Now fully reimagined, STORM is a masterpiece that sparkles with beauty, wit, reason and rationality.Watch the video here: http://bit.ly/1s2DUuU

Orion

Expecting Better

Emily Oster
Authors:
Emily Oster

A groundbreaking guide to pregnancy: empowers women with the facts and allows them to make their own decisions. FREAKANOMICS meets WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU'RE EXPECTING.Award-winning Emily Oster debunks myths about pregnancy to empower women while they're expecting.Pregnant women are often treated as if they were children, given long lists of items to avoid - alcohol, caffeine, sushi - without any real explanation from their doctors about why. They hear frightening and contradictory myths about everything from weight gain to sleeping on your back to bed rest from friends and pregnancy books. In EXPECTING BETTER, Oster shows that the information given to pregnant women is sometimes wrong and almost always oversimplified.EXPECTING BETTER overturns standard recommendations for alcohol, caffeine, sushi, bed rest and induction, while putting in context the blanket guidelines for fetal testing, weight gain, risks of pregnancy over the age of 35, and nausea, among others.Oster offers the real-world advice one would never get at the doctor's office. Knowing that the health of your baby is paramount, readers can know more and worry less. Having the numbers is a tremendous relief - and so is the occasional glass of wine.

Gollancz

Wild Cards: Dead Man's Hand

George R.R. Martin, John J. Miller
Authors:
George R.R. Martin, John J. Miller

Chrysalis, the glass-skinned queen of the Joker underworld, has been found brutally murdered in her popular restaurant, the Crystal Palace.Now two men are out to find her killer - Jay Ackroyd, the Ace private detective who discovered her ruined body, and the vigilante archer known as The Yeoman, who has been framed for the crime.Their quest leads them on a nightmare journey of madness, violence, passion and intrigue that will forever alter the fate of those who contracted the Wild Card virus.Collaboratively written by George R. R. Martin and John J. Miller, this is both a gripping mystery and a chilling story of suspense.

Gateway

The Shadow Man

Lee Barton, Lionel Fanthorpe, Patricia Fanthorpe
Authors:
Lee Barton, Lionel Fanthorpe, Patricia Fanthorpe

'The Night Walker' began as an ordinary country legend. No two stories agreed on the details and Paul Donovan's attempts to sift out the facts seemed doomed to failure. He was on the verge of omitting it from his new series of articles on East Anglian Folklore when a sudden, sinister coincidence brought the old story sharply back into focus. An eccentric old wildfowler was taken to hospital where he babbled incoherently about "the man in the stove-pipe hat" before dying of inexplicable injuries. Donovan restarted his enquiries and found an unexpectedly determined ally in Shelia Morrison, an outcast from her village, who had been befriended by the dead wildfowler. together they hunted for intangible clues across the lonely reed beds and slow mysterious rivers of Broadland - the areas holiday-makers rarely see. Piece by piece the puzzle fitted together to reveal a chain of horror linking the past and present...connecting the mid-1960s with the ghoulish outbreak of body-snatching at the start of the Nineteenth Century. Not all the victims had gone for medical research...'The Night Walker' is abroad again and fear treads beside him.

Gateway

Carson of Venus SF Gateway Omnibus

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Authors:
Edgar Rice Burroughs
W&N

Red Nile

Robert Twigger
Authors:
Robert Twigger

A rip-roaring yet intimate biography of the mighty Nile by Robert Twigger, award-winning author of ANGRY WHITE PYJAMAS. 'A tour de force' FINANCIAL TIMES.So much begins on the banks of the Nile: all religion, all life, all stories, the script we write in, the language we speak, the gods, the legends and the names of stars. This mighty river that flows through a quarter of all Africa has been history's most sustained creator.In this dazzling, idiosyncratic journey from ancient times to the Arab Spring, award-winning author Robert Twigger weaves a Nile narrative like no other. As he navigates a meandering course through the history of the world's greatest river, he plucks the most intriguing, colourful and dramatic stories - truly a Nile red in tooth and claw.The result is both an epic journey through the whole sweep of human and pre-human history, and an intimate biography of the curious life of this great river, overflowing with stories of excess, love, passion, splendour and violence.

W&N

Disraeli

Douglas Hurd, Edward Young
Authors:
Douglas Hurd, Edward Young

Benjamin Disraeli was the most gifted parliamentarian of the nineteenth century and a superb orator, writer and wit - but how much do we really know about the man behind the words?'As Douglas Hurd and Edward Young point out in their splendidly written, finely judged and thoroughly persuasive book, a vast chasm yawned between the real Disraeli and his posthumous reinvention' Dominic Sandbrook, SUNDAY TIMES'Not only, they tell us in this vigorously debunking romp through his political life, did he never use the phrases "One Nation" or "Tory Democracy", he was actively hostile to the concepts that they are now understood to represent' Sam Leith, THE SPECTATOR'The book is more a study in character . . . than a staid political narrative. As a result, Disraeli: Or the Two Lives is full of unexpected jolts and paradoxes . . . It proves an unflagging pleasure to read' Richard Davenport-Hines, GUARDIAN'So intoxicating that you will find yourself snorting it up in one go, as I did, with great pleasure' Boris Johnson, MAIL ON SUNDAY

Gollancz

Gloriana; or, The Unfulfill'd Queen

Michael Moorcock
Authors:
Michael Moorcock

Gloriana rules an Albion whose empire embraces America and most of Asia. A new Golden Age of peace, enlightenment and prosperity has dawned. Gloriana is Albion and Albion is Gloriana; if one falls, so too will the other. And Gloriana is oppressed by the burden this places upon her - and by the fact that she remains incapable of orgasm. The maintenance of the delicate balance that keeps Albion and Gloriana thriving depends on Montfallcon, Gloriana's Chancellor, and on his network of spies and assassins - in particular on Quire, cold hearted seducer of virtue and murderer of innocence. When Quire falls out with Montfallcon, he forms an alliance with his greatest enemy and conceives a plan to ruin Gloriana, destroy Albion, the empire and the Golden Age itself. But even the utterly ruthless Quire does not fully understand what he has set in motion when he persuades the Queen to fall in love with him... Moorcock's masterly evocation of Gloriana's strange and secretive palace and of a vibrant London make this one of his most powerful and memorable novels.