A Life of My Own
A Sunday Times Top 10 Bestseller
In this remarkable memoir of love, loss and literature, acclaimed biographer Claire Tomalin turns her eye to another fascinating literary life: her own. She tells of a wartime childhood, Cambridge friendships and an early marriage to a brilliant journalist. After his sudden death in a war zone, Claire is left to raise their four children alone – all while leading a trail-blazing career in literary London.
A Life of My Own is the tale of a woman overcoming obstacles both rare and routine to live not only a good but also a meaningful life.
‘A dramatic and absorbing survivor’s tale’ Hilary Spurling, Spectator
‘Unexpectedly moving. Tomalin’s story filled me with a kind of awe. Every page is valiant, every paragraph full of pluck’ Rachel Cooke, New Statesman
‘She has been tested in ways few women are. This memoir is a triumph’ Valerie Grove, Literary Review
In this triumph of clear sightedness, Tomalin turns her biographers searchlight on herself * Sunday Times Culture Books of the Year * As one of the best biographers of her generation, Claire Tomalin had written about great novelists and poets to huge success: now, she turns to look at her own life * Guardian Books of the Year * There is a truth to every chapter of her recollection -- Tim Adams * Observer New Review, Books of the Year * Ambushingly poignant * Observer Books of the Year * As well as her adventures in literary London as a hack, we also see a private life of contentment and heartbreak -- Robbie Millen * The Times Books of the Year * It is not Tomalin's professional life that impresses most in this memoir but her survival through personal tragedy, or rather , her remarkable ability to articulate its bleakness... She speaks from the heart but retains a sort of privacy, and is all the more powerful for it * Evening Standard * She has been tested in ways few women are. Her ability to overcome adversity may seem discreetly, even austerely handled, but for Claire Tomalin this memoir is another triumph * Literary Review * I loved Claire Tomalin's memoir and ate through it in a day when I was supposed to be doing other things. So interesting and delightful and charming. I loved how she weaves the big dramatic events with the everyday - which is so much of what life is. -- Cathy Rentzenbrink, bestselling author of The Last Act of Love She should be a heroine to modern snowflakes who melt at the first hurdle. Tomalin is like a glacier: unstoppable, inexorable, gathering resolve as she goes... The book is poised and beautifully paced * Times * Her memoir is peppered with fascinating pen portraits and anecdotes... she has tried, as Pepys did in his life, to give the 'texture' of a life. This she has achieved quite brilliantly * Sunday Times * Absorbing, moving and marvellously written -- Kate Kellaway * Observer * You will find it hard not to be amazed and impossible not to be moved by the indomitable spirit which drives this memoir...She comes across like the heroine of a great novel...a hugely entertaining book -- Anthony Quinn * Guardian *
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