In 1963 Diana Athill published an autobiography called Instead of a Letter, which has gained an enduring reputation. Its latest 'rediscovery' was in the United States in 1984, when a reviewer in the Washington Post said: 'Only a few totally honest accounts of a human life exist...To see the truth of your own life you must first have gotten beyond ...Read MoreIn 1963 Diana Athill published an autobiography called Instead of a Letter, which has gained an enduring reputation. Its latest 'rediscovery' was in the United States in 1984, when a reviewer in the Washington Post said: 'Only a few totally honest accounts of a human life exist...To see the truth of your own life you must first have gotten beyond all illusions about yourself, and probably about the world, as well. She is also a gifted writer - and if one may judge by this book, an enchanting woman.' This caused a friend to chide Miss Athill for writing nothing further (except for one little-noticed novel). Miss Athill then divulged that she had in fact written two 'documentaries', one in the late 1960s, one in the early 1970s, which were 'in a drawer somewhere'. She was persuaded to disinter them, and this astonishing book is the first of them. It is the story of how and why an exceptionally charming man killed himself. He was an Egyptian who had been exiled by Nasser's regime because he was a Communist, and he wrote one very good novel. She calls him 'Didi', a name not unlike that given by his family to the real man. His gifts were considerable, but were undermined by depression, which made him self-destructive: a gambler, a drinker, a wrecker of relationships - and a friend impossible to drop because of his extreme vulnerability. Miss Athill, having by a narrow margin steered clear of being in love with him, took him on and supported him for his last three years, gradually learning how little she or anyone else could do to avert what Didi called 'the one authentic act in my life': his suicide, which took place at her flat. Their friendship remained complex and intense even after any resemblance to a love affair, as usually understood, had long evaporated. For this reason Diana Athill knew that he could not write about Didi as a detached observer. The interaction between them was part of the story, so she would have to include herself in it if it was to be bas near the truth as she could get it. It is this which gives her book its powerful immediacy and humanity.Read Less
Acceptable. Warping to pages ACCEPTABLE with noted wear to cover and pages. Binding intact. May contain highlighting, inscriptions or notations. We offer a no-hassle guarantee on all our items. Orders generally ship by the next business day. Default Text.
Fair. Good copy for reading, may have heavy page wear with writing textual notes highlighting or be an heavily used ex library copy with library markings, stickers or stamps. Dust jacket or accessories may not be included.
New. 0393338584 Ships Within 24 Hours. Tracking Number available for all USA orders. Excellent Customer Service. Upto 15 Days 100% Money Back Gurantee. Try Our Fast! ! ! ! Shipping With Tracking Number.
Copyright in bibliographic data and cover images is held by Nielsen Book Services Limited, Baker & Taylor, Inc., or by their respective licensors, or by the publishers, or by their respective licensors. For personal use only. All rights reserved. All rights in images of books or other publications are reserved by the original copyright holders.