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DYLAN THOMAS THE COLLECTED LETTERS: Vol Two 1939-1953
Bibliophile price: £3.50
An incomparable self-portrait of an enchanting, maddening and ultimately tragic poet, we are thrilled to have the two volume reprinted definitive collection of his letters. (Volume One code 86863). Volume Two 1939-1953 spans the outbreak of WW2 to the days just before Dylan Thomas's death in New York at the age of 39. Like no biography can, the letters bring his life and times of the tempestuous poet to life. At his best when addressing people he liked, who were often the 'sub men' he enjoyed drinking with, 'hack Fleet Streeters, assistant film producers, professional drunks, strays and outlaws', he had an unfailing eye for the frailties of human behaviour including his own. He loved, wrote, drank, begged and borrowed his way through a flamboyant life, determined to support his family, and rarely at peace with himself. Each letter takes the reader further along the path of the poet's self-destruction and are written with verve and lyricism. Fascinating letters include ones to Edith Sitwell in her villa in Italy, social arrangements with Douglas Cleverdon or about payments and travel arrangements with Jean Leroy, to John Arlott and love letters to Caitlin: 15th August 1945 while was staying at Mervyn Peak's flat. "I have never missed you more nor loved you more, and every long night without you has been sleepless and fear-filled..." The roll call of names of his correspondence is quite extraordinary and we enter a long-past literary world with cries of despair to rare moments of happiness in Wales. Witty and wise words. 594pp in softback.

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