`I have not laughed aloud at a book so frequently for a very long time...a major literary event' David Lodge, Times Literary Supplement
Kingsley Amis was a prolific, brilliant and outrageous correspondent. In letters to friends like Philip Larkin and Robert Conquest he could unbutton himself to an extent impossible in work intended for publication, and as a result the more than 800 letters included in this volume contain some of his wittiest and most acerbic writings.
They reveal Amis's youthful dissatisfactions, which would be comically recreated in his spectacularly successful first novel, Lucky Jim; his love of jazz; his frequently caustic observations about family life; the painful breakdown of his first marriage, and the subsequent souring of his second, to the novelist Elizabeth Jane Howard; and his development into one of the country's most revered, yet uniquely controversial, literary figures. Seldom can any writer have provided such a lively and coruscating self-portrait as is revealed by these letters.
`You can put this book in front of people and watch them crack up'
David Sexton, Evening Standard
`A bracing delight'
Julie Burchill, Guardian
`Better than Evelyn Waugh'
`A wonderful, wickedly enjoyable collection'
Andrew Vine, Yorkshire Post
Katharine Whitehorn, Observer
Blake Morrison, Independent on Sunday
Sir Kingsley Amis was born in 1922. He was the author of twenty-two novels, as well as numerous collections of short stories and non-fiction writings, anthologies of poetry and prose, and books on subjects as diverse as drinking, James Bond and science fiction. His first, hugely successful, novel Lucky Jim was published in 1954, and in 1986 he won the Booker Prize for The Old Devils. He died in 1995.