Winner of the Somerset Maugham Award for Best Biography
Humphrey Carpenter was born in Oxford in 1946 and has spent most of his life in that city. He read English Language and Literature at Keble College, Oxford, and met Professor J.R.R. Tolkien on a number of occasions. For some years he worked for the BBC as a radio producer and broadcaster and has won acclaim as a top biographer, including the recent and controversial biography of Robert Runcie.
'A constantly enjoyable volume' John Carey, Sunday Times 'A triumph of skill and tact... not one dull or slack sentence' Kingsley Amis, New Statesman 'It must be technically very difficult to write a biography of more than one person at a time: it is still more difficult to capture the atmosphere of a group... Mr Carpenter has managed both things admirably' Mary Warnock, Sunday Telegraph