* From Maya Angelou - one of the most celebrated writers and poets of the world - her marvellous new book, now in paperback
There is no-one quite like Maya Angelou. Poet to the president, champion of the people, best-selling autobiographer, her experiences as dancer, singer, waitress, activist, director, teacher, wife and mother, have made her one of the few people truly qualified to share her lessons of a lifetime. With her customary courage and humour - and always with style and grace - she reflects on the people and places she has known. She talks about Africa and ageing, she gives us a profile of her great friend and 'daughter' Oprah Winfrey, she sings the praises of sensuality. But here too are her thoughts on the end of a much-wanted marriage, confessions of rage and the importance of solitude. EVEN THE STARS LOOK LONESOME is the work of a wonderful woman who is not afraid to admit to the mistakes and vulnerabilities that make us human.
These essays have an easy strength ... their impact forceful - TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT
America's unofficial Poet Laureate waxes lyrical - COSMOPOLITAN
The best known poet in America - SUNDAY TELEGRAPH
Simple language laced with colours and sensual imagery. There is honesty, too - DAILY TELEGRAPH
Dr Maya Angelou was one of the world's most important writers and activists. Born 4 April 1928, she lived and chronicled an extraordinary life: rising from poverty, violence and racism, she became a renowned author, poet, playwright, civil rights' activist - working with Malcolm X and Martin Luther King - and memoirist. She wrote and performed a poem, 'On the Pulse of Morning', for President Clinton on his inauguration; she was given the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Obama and was honoured by more than seventy universities throughout the world.
She first thrilled the world with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969). This was followed by six volumes of autobiography, the seventh and final volume, Mom & Me & Mom, published in 2013. She wrote three collections of essays; many volumes of poetry, including His Day is Done, a tribute to Nelson Mandela; and two cookbooks. She had a lifetime appointment as Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest University of North Carolina. Dr Angelou died on 28 May 2014.