Catalogue Number: Z22-78LZ
- Author: Philip Larkin
- Format: Paperback
- Publisher: Faber & Faber
- Published: 03 January 1998
- ISBN: 9780571131204
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The appearance of Philip Larkin's second prose collection - reviews and critical assessments of writers and writing; pieces on jazz, mostly uncollected; some long, revealing and often highly entertaining interviews given on various occasions - was a considerable literary event. Stamped by wit, originality and intelligence, it was vintage Larkin throughout: 'Deprivation is for me what daffodils were for Wordsworth'. 'I see life more as an affair of solitude diversified by company than as an affair of company diversified by solitude'. Question: 'How did you arrive upon the image of a toad for work or labour?' Answer: 'Sheer genius'.
Philip Larkin was born in Coventry in 1922 and was educated at King Henry VIII School, Coventry, and St John's College, Oxford. As well as his volumes of poems, which include The Whitsun Weddings and High Windows, he wrote two novels, Jill and A Girl in Winter, and two books of collected journalism: All What Jazz: A Record Library, and Required Writing: Miscellaneous Prose. He worked as a librarian at the University of Hull from 1955 until his death in 1985. He was the best-loved poet of his generation, and the recipient of innumerable honours, including the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry, and the WHSmith Award.