Stuart: A Life Backwards - 4th Estate Matchbook Classics (Paperback)Alexander Masters (author)
- In stock
The winner of the Guardian First Book Award that reinvented the biographic form.
One of the ten books - novels, memoirs and one very unusual biography - that make up our Matchbook Classics' series, a stunningly redesigned collection of some of the best loved titles on our backlist.
Stuart: A Life Backwards expanded the possibilities of what a biography could be: the stories it could tell, and how it could tell them. It is about a remarkable friendship between a reclusive writer ('a middle-class scum ponce, if you want to be honest about it, Alexander'), and Stuart Shorter, a thief, hostage-taker, psycho and street raconteur.
Told backwards - Stuart's idea - it starts with a deeply troubled thirty-two-year-old stepping out in front of the 11.15 train from London to King's Lynn, and ends with a 'happy-go-lucky little boy' of twelve. Compelling, humane and funny, it is as extraordinary and unexpected as the life it describes.
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 310 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 22 mm
'Unique and wonderful.' Daily Mail
'Possibly the best biography I have ever read.' Mark Haddon
'This is a very rare and haunting book ... A great first book.' Andrew O'Hagan
'Good books like this appear about once every five years. It's been years since I've been so delighted by a book and so surprised by it ... When I'd finished I felt bereft, as if I'd lost an old friend.' Zadie Smith
'Utterly compelling and very funny.' Daily Telegraph
'One of the most remarkable and touching biographies I've ever read.' Minette Marin, Sunday Times
'I feel so strongly about this strange, funny, sad book that I hardly know where to begin ... My enthusiasm feels almost limitless. A page-turner.' Observer
'Funny and original, a startling book ... By the end I was doubled up in tears, but throughout I was often doubled up with laughter. It is dazzling.' Vogue
'A remarkable biography. Unforgettably moving. A gripping read.' Tim Lott, Sunday Times
'A comedy of errors and horrors deftly handled and with a terrifically droll sense of humour.' Melanie McGrath, Evening Standard
'With his first book, Alexander Masters ... has achieved something remarkable. He has, without patronising, given a voice to the "underclass"; at the same time, without preaching, he shows us the value of even the most damaged of human lives ... a powerful book, humane, instructive and entirely original. Sunday Telegraph
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“a tragic life”
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