Boswell's Presumptuous Task

Boswell's Presumptuous Task : The Making of the Life of Dr. Johnson

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Description

James Boswell's "The Life of Samuel Johnson" is the most celebrated of all biographies, acknowledged as one of the greatest and most entertaining books in the English language. Yet Boswell himself has generally been considered little more than an idiot and condemned by posterity as a lecher and drunk. How could such a fool have written such a book? With great wit, Adam Sisman here tells the story of Boswell's presumptuous task-the making of the greatest biography of all time. Sisman traces the friendship between Boswell and Samuel Johnson, his great mentor, and provides a fascinating account of Boswell's seven-year struggle to write "The Life of Samuel Johnson."
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Product details

  • Paperback | 368 pages
  • 135.1 x 203.2 x 20.8mm | 326.59g
  • Penguin Books
  • United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0142001759
  • 9780142001752
  • 878,921

About Adam Sisman

Adam Sisman is the author of A. J. P. Taylor: A Biography. He lives with his wife, the novelist Robyn Sisman, and their two children.
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Review quote

"Extraordinarily gripping...Sisman skillfully takes us into the biographer's workshop." --The New York Review of Books
"Smart and very readable...a highly affecting portrait of Boswell the writer." --The New York Times Book Review
"[A] sparkling, companionable, and intelligent account...Sisman's approach is attractive and stimulating to anybody interested in the ethics of biography writing." --The Atlantic Monthly
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Rating details

113 ratings
4 out of 5 stars
5 33% (37)
4 40% (45)
3 24% (27)
2 3% (3)
1 1% (1)
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