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Biography

Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls review recollections of a resolute outsider

A secretly gay child's memories are captured with exacting candour David Sedaris's voice is familiar to listeners of This American Life or Radio 4's Meet David Sedaris : arch, insinuating, slightly world-weary as it winds itself around childhood

Whistler: A Life for Art's Sake review

A vain and unpleasant man - but what pictures! Daniel Sutherland is dazzled by Whistler's work, and takes the artist at his own estimation It is one of the great unfairnesses in life that bad people sometimes produce great art. That is certainly true of J

Parliament: The Biography review 'Westminster's corruption is rooted in history'

Chris Bryant's vigorous historical account of parliament tries to restore the reputation of Westminster, but fails to embrace the complexities of its chequered past Oh, for a book of the kind this one might have been. There are plenty of narrow studies of

‘Louis Armstrong, Master of Modernism’, by Thomas Brothers

Years after the trumpeter Louis Armstrong left New Orleans for Chicago in 1922, he recalled how lucky he was to have travelled alongside a family friend who was carrying an overflowing basket of fried chicken.

Charlie Chaplin - Peter Ackroyd

He was the very first icon of the silver screen, and is one of the most recognisable faces in Hollywood, even a hundred years on from his first film. But what of the man behind the moustache? The director holding the camera as well as acting in front of i

Charlie Chaplin by Peter Ackroyd, book review: An intriguing, if laboured, argument about life and times of a comic genius

When any book on Napoleon, Hitler or Jesus is published (figures with whom the subject of this biography has been compared) the reader might legitimately ask "Why?" Charlie Chaplin has already provided an account of his life, as have several children and

A Man Called Destruction - Holly George-Warren

Alex Chilton’s story is rags to riches in reverse, beginning with teenage rock stardom and heading downward. Following stints leading 60s sensation the Box Tops (“The Letter”) and pioneering 70s popsters Big Star (“the ultimate American pop band

Charlie Chaplin by Peter Ackroyd, review

At the age of seven Charlie Chaplin was sleeping on park benches when he wasn’t in the workhouse.

Alex Chilton: 'I was getting very destructive in a lot of ways'

Sitting in an almost empty pub/club two hours before the doors opened, and one and a half hours after the Main Event was meant to turn up for his soundcheck, was hardly my original idea for a magic night out.

Genius who refused to let bigots call the tune

Slavery may officially have been abolished in America in 1865, but of course it wasn’t in actuality. Servitude and exploitation continued unabated for how long? A century?