Lionel Logue was a self-taught and almost unknown Australian speech therapist. Yet it was this outgoing, amiable man who almost single-handedly turned the nervous, tongue-tied Duke of York into one of Britain's greatest kings after his brother, Edward VIII, abdicated in 1936 over his love for Mrs Simpson.b bThe King's Speech is the previously untold story of the remarkable relationship between Logue and the haunted future King George VI, written with Logue's grandson and drawing exclusively from his grandfather Lionel's diaries and archive.b bThis is an astonishing insight into the House of Windsor at the time of its greatest crisis. Never before has there been such a portrait of the British monarchy seen through the eyes of an Australian commoner who was proud to serve, and save, his King.
A full and revealing biography of one of the century's greatest English writers and an icon to a generation.
Dame Iris Murdoch has played a major role in English life and letter for nearly half a century. As A.S.Byatt notes, she is 'absolutely central to our culture'. As a novelist, as a thinker, and as a private individual, her life has significance for our age. There is a recognisable Murdoch world, and the adjective 'Murdochian' has entered the language to describe situations where a small group of people interract intricately and strangely. Her story is as emotionally fascinating as that of Virginia Woolf, but far less well known; hers has been an adventurous, highly eventful life, a life of phenomenal emotional and intellectual pressures, and her books portray a real world which is if anything toned down as well as mythicised. For Iris's formative years, astonishingly, movingly and intimately documented by Conradi's meticulous research, were spent among the leading European and British intellectuals who fought and endured World War II, and her life like her books, was full of the most extraordinary passions and profound relationships with some of the most inspiring and influential thinkers, artists, writers and poets of that turbulent time and after.
Peter Conradi was very close to both Iris Murdoch and John Bayley, Iris's husband, whose memoir of their life together has itself been the subject of an enormous amount of attention and acclaim. This will be an extraordinarily full biography, for there are vast resources in diaries and papers and friends' recollections, and while it is a superlative biography it is also a superb history of a generation who have profoundly influenced our world today.
Published to coincide with his major biography of Iris Murdoch, Peter Conradi's acclaimed critical appreciation of her work is reissued in a fully revised and updated edition, with a foreword by John Bayley.
Modest, handsome and a fine poet, eccentric Englishman Frank Thompson made an unlikely soldier. Brother of E. P. Thompson and lover of Iris Murdoch, Frank was an intellectual idealist, a rare combination of brilliant mind and enormous heart. Of his wartime experiences, Frank wrote prodigiously. His letters, diaries and poetry still read fresh and intimate today - and it is from these that Peter J. Conradi brings vividly to life a brilliantly attractive and courageous personality. Aged just twenty-three, Frank was captured, tortured and executed in Bulgaria. A soldier of principle and integrity, he fought a poet's war; a very English hero from a very different era.
The King's Speech is the previously untold story of the extraordinary relationship between an unknown and certainly unqualified speech therapist called Lionel Logue and the haunted young man who became King George VI. Logue wasn't a British aristocrat or even an Englishman--he was a commoner and an Australian to boot. Nevertheless, it was Logue who single-handedly turned the famously nervous, tongue-tied Duke of York into a man who was capable of being king. Had Logue not saved Bertie (as the man who was to become King George VI was always known) from his debilitating stammer and pathological nervousness in front of a crowd or microphone, it is almost certain that the House of Windsor would have collapsed. Drawn from Logue's personal diaries, The King's Speech is an intimate portrait of the British monarchy at the time of its greatest crisis. It throws extraordinary light on the intimacy of the two men--and on the vital role the king's wife, the late Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, played in bringing them together to save her husband's reputation and his career as king.