The Many Lives of the Angry Young Man
By John Heilpern
Vintage Books USA, Paperback, 9780375702952, 527pp.
Publication Date: January 8, 2008
List Price: $16.95*
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Through a working-class childhood and five marriages, Osborne led a tumultuous life. An impossible father, he threw his teenage daughter out of the house and never spoke to her again. His last written words were "I have sinned." Theater critic John Heilpern's detailed portrait, including interviews with Osborne's daughter, scores of friends and enemies, and his alleged male lover, shows us a contradictory genius-an ogre with charm, a radical who hated change, and above all, a defiant individualist.
“Miraculous. . . . A model of what a literary biography ought to be. . . . The Osborne who emerges from these pages is a character of almost Shakespearean dimensions, grand as Falstaff, volatile as Hamlet, mad as Lear.” —The Philadelphia Inquirer"A terrific story. . . . An appealing, rollicking portrait. . . . The best literary biography I have read in a long time." —Harold Evans, The Wall Street Journal"I cannot recall a biography that was so amusing and intense. . . . If there is going to be a better-written, more entertaining, or more sharply observed performance this year, I'll be mighty surprised." —Carl Rollyson, The New York Sun