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Conan Doyle By Andrew Lycett

Conan Doyle
by Andrew Lycett

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Ground-breaking biography of the creator of fiction's best loved detective
7 in stock

Conan Doyle Summary

Conan Doyle: The Man Who Created Sherlock Holmes by Andrew Lycett

Sherlock Holmes might have been the epitome of cool reason - 'a calculating machine' in the words of his friend Dr John H. Watson - but the real life of his creator was very different. A man of deep emotion, complex motivation and prodigious energy, Arthur Conan Doyle ended his life an ardent spiritualist, happy to promote the famous 'Cottingley Fairies' photographs, which are now known to have been faked. Having rejected his Irish family's Catholicism, he could not, for all his scientific training as a doctor, dismiss his gut feeling that there was another dimension to existence. Well before he adopted spiritualism as a religion during the First World War, he dabbled in all aspects of the paranormal, holding seances while a GP in Portsmouth. With his sure understanding of the historical background, Andrew Lycett sets this unfolding story against the intellectual currents of the age, as well as unravelling his subject's internal life. Plagued by an alcoholic father and stirred on by a domineering mother, Conan Doyle fell into a placid marriage which was rudely interrupted when he fell passionately in love with another woman, just as his first wife contracted the tuberculosis that would kill her. Conan Doyle dealt with these traumatic events by throwing himself even more into his work, taking up various causes (such as the injustice meted out on the solicitor George Edalji - the subject of Julian Barnes's best-selling novel ARTHUR & GEORGE) and immersing himself in a wide range of other activities, including politics, clubland, and sports. His literary output was not confined to the creation of fiction's most famous detective; Lycett sheds new light on Conan Doyle's horror and occult stories, historical romances, factual histories, and spiritualist tracts. With access to fascinating new material, Lycett gives the most comprehensive, psychologically satisfying and delightfully readable portrait yet of the man who created Sherlock Holmes.

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Conan Doyle Reviews

"(An) excellent biography. Comprehensive and authoritative, it is undoubtedly the best account of Doyle to date" -- John Carey SUNDAY TIMES "thoroughly satisfying" -- Frances Wilson NEW STATESMEN "In Andrew Lycett's hugely enjoyable new biography, the sheer breathtaking dynamism of the man shines through" -- Philip Hoare SUNDAY TELEGRAPH "Conan Doyle has found a biographer of distinction in Andrew Lycett." -- Giles Foden THE GUARDIAN "Shrewd and thorough. entertaining" -- DJ Taylor THE INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY "(Conan Doyle's) other writing will be read because of Holmes and better understood as a result of Lycett's brilliant analysis" -- Geoffrey Elborn SUNDAY HERALD "a serious piece of work by an experienced professional biographer. particularly good on the intelliectual background to Doyle's work" The Economist "Andrew Lycett's genuis as a biographer matches Holmes's as a detective" Newsletter of Sherlock Holmes Society of London "admirable clarity and fairness... (the book) must surely, at this juncture, become the standard biography" The Tablet "Lycett's sophisticated account reveals a character with light and shade" The Daily Telegraph "Lycett's book has the effect of moving Conan Doyle into our age" Scottish Review of Books "Marvellous. by far the most comprehensive biography of the man to date" The Fortean Times "This is a model biography: lucid, fair and unfailingly readable" Mail on Sunday "authoritative" The International Herald Tribune "Scrupulous, authoritative" Asian Age "Lycett uses the new material well to draw conclusions about Conan Doyle's character" Boston Globe and Mail

About Andrew Lycett

Andrew Lycett was educated at Charterhouse and Christ Church, Oxford (where he read modern history). As a foreign reporter he specialised in Africa and the Middle East. A full-time author since the early 1990s, he has written a number of highly acclaimed biographies and lives in north London.

Additional information

Conan Doyle: The Man Who Created Sherlock Holmes by Andrew Lycett
Andrew Lycett
Used - Very Good
Orion Publishing Co
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.