Love, sex, death, boredom, ecstasy, existential angst, political upheaval - the history of literature offers a rich and varied exploration of the human condition across the centuries. In this absorbing companion to literature's rich past, arranged by days of the year, acclaimed critics and friends Stephen Fender and John Sutherland turn up the most inspiring, enlightening, surprising or curious artefacts that literature has to offer. Find out why 16 June 1904 mattered so much to Joyce, which great literary love affair was brought to a tragic end on 11 February 1963 and why Roy Campbell punched Stephen Spender on the nose on 14 April 1949 in this sumptuous voyage through the highs and lows of literature's bejewelled past.
John Sutherland was the Lord Northcliffe Professor of Modern English Literature at UCL and a past Chairman of the Booker Prize panel, and is the author of one of the standard texts on Victorian fiction. Stephen Fender has taught Literature in the US, in Scotland at the University of Edinburgh, and in England at London and Sussex, where he was head of American Studies from 1985 to 2003.