The Invention of Angela Carter: A Biography
Since her death in 1992, at the age of just fifty-one, Angela Carter has been widely acknowledged as one of the most important English writers of the last century. Her work stands out for its bawdiness and linguistic zest, its hospitality to the fantastical and the absurd, and its extraordinary inventiveness and range. Her life was as rich with incident, as vigorously modern, as unconventional, and ultimately as tragic as anything in her fiction. This is the story of how she invented herself - as a new kind of woman and a new kind of writer - and how she came to write such subversive, seductive and distinctive masterworks as The Bloody Chamber, Nights at the Circus and Wise Children. Meticulously researched - facilitated by interviews with Carter's family and friends, as well as unrestricted access to her manuscripts and journals - and artfully constructed, this is literary biography at its very best. Edmund Gordon uncovers a wealth of new details about the life of this extraordinary writer, and skilfully captures the remarkable personality that left an indelible mark on English fiction.
"A brilliantly researched, astute and fascinating account of the growth and emergence of one of the most heroic figures in modern fiction and one of the most exquisite and original literary sensibilities in our culture. Edmund Gordon captures Angela Carter's mixture of the wayward, the weird, and the everyday with insight and care and charts Carter's steely ambition and sense of direction with sympathy, as well as her sexual power and her dedication to making it new." -- Colm Toibin
Edmund Gordon has written for the Guardian, Observer, London Review of Books, Times Literary Supplement and The Sunday Times, among many other publications. In 2012 he received a Jerwood Award for non-fiction from the Royal Society of Literature. He lives in London, and teaches literature and creative writing at King's College London. This is his first book.