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The Essential Gore Vidal

Gore Vidal

6 Reviews

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Prose: non-fiction

* The very best of Gore Vidal's fiction and non-fiction including for eg correspondence with Jackie Kennedy.

Vidal writes with ease and grace, and roams through many subjects and genres. He is a master of the historical novel, in which he has explored American history, ancient history, and the history of religion. He has developed his own style of science fiction combined with satire, and in the books he refers to as his 'inventions' he writes cautionary tales about sex, politics, art, and philosophy. He is at once a contrarion, a wise man, and a romantic. He is also wickedly funny, and often outrageous. This collection (the only single volume that includes Vidal's fiction and his essays) contains two complete works - MYRA BRECKINRIDGE, his most famous novel, and THE BEST MAN, a play about the American presidency. There are selections from THE CITY AND THE PILLAR, his early, controversial novel about homosexual love, and excerpts from later works as JULIAN, DULUTH, and LIVE FROM GOLGOTHA. Selections from the American history novels - BURR, LINCOLN, 1876, EMPIRE, and WASHINGTON, D.C. - have been woven together to provide a continuous narrative.

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Praise for The Essential Gore Vidal

  • Falling somewhere between the realms of Henry Adams and all of Monty Python, Gore Vidal has for many years served as America's own Tiresias - a seer and a scourge as well as an entertainer of the highest order - Jay McInerney

  • A feast of Gore - John Sutherland, Sunday Times

  • It is Vidal himself who is essential. Hail to the chief - Victoria Glendinning, Daily Telegraph

  • There is no one quite like him, and if you do not know his work you should - Erica Wagner, The Times

  • Gore Vidal is the most elegant, erudite and eclectic writer of his generation - Roy Hattersley, Guardian

  • A figure whose vibrant verbal presence has itself been an essential of American cultural life for the past fifty-odd years - Sylvia Brownrigg, TLS

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Gore Vidal

Gore Vidal was at the centre of literary and intellectual life for half a century and wrote 'The Narratives of a Golden Age' series as well as countless bestsellers. He died on 31st July 2012.

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