Hidden Wyndham

Hidden Wyndham : Life, Love, Letters

4.42 (26 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , Photographs by 

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Until now, little was known of John Wyndham. Despite his popularity, his obsessive need for privacy led to him being known as "the invisible man of science fiction".
He redefined the genre with dystopian classics The Day of the Triffids and The Midwich Cuckoos. In Hidden Wyndham, Amy Binns reveals the woman who was the inspiration for his strong-minded heroines. Their secret love affair sustained this gentle and desperately shy man through failure, war, and, ultimately, success.
Hidden Wyndham shows how Wyndham's own disturbing war experiences - witnessing the destruction of London in the Blitz then as part of the invading British army in France and Germany - inspired and underlay his dystopian masterpieces.
It provides an insight into the lives of men and women who refused to live by the oppressive rules of society in the mid-20th century. Many extracts from his letters are included, along with his own photographs.
"Put your hand on your heart sometimes, my lovely, and tell yourself that it is mine. An era had shut up its houses and gone away, perhaps forever. But we had that little much longer. How cruel the macrocosm, sweet, but how sweet the microcosm. Oh, my darling."
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Product details

  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 22mm | 283g
  • Hebden Bridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 48 black and white illustrations
  • 0992756715
  • 9780992756710
  • 380,894

Table of contents

Part One: 1903-1939:
Edgbaston, Birmingham, March 1911;
Edwardian Scandals;
Discovering Utopia;
Love Without Chains;
Pulp Fiction.
Part Two: 1939-1945:
Row Cottage, Steep, 3 September 1939;
Jack's Blitz, Grace's Exile;
The Long Haul;
Somewhere in France;
The Final Push.
Part Three: 1946-1969:
The Penn Club, London, 12 June 1949;
The Day of the Triffids;
New Worlds;
Aliens Among Us;
Wyndham's Women;
Return to Utopia.
List of Works,
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Review quote

"Wyndham was a public persona, just one of many pseudonyms...The man behind all of them kept himself well hidden, and thanks to this perceptive biography published over fifty years after his death, only now is he becoming visible." Pippa Goldschmidt in the Times Literary Supplement. "At last we have in Amy Binns's new biography of John Wyndham a well-written and objectively researched book...an excellent book." Christopher Priest, author of The Prestige. "Letter after letter illuminates the deeply affective and humane consciousness of a man who longed to be reunited with his partner and confidante, and yet felt profoundly rattled by his own war-time actions...thoroughly revealing, engrossing, often charming, and quite moving. At times I found myself wondering if Wyndham's ghost would be dismayed by this posthumous invasion of his privacy - and then I turned the page and read on." Alvaro Zinos-Amaro in Locus Magazine. "There are times when perhaps one does not wish to learn more about one's literary heroes, just in case, but in this instance, Amy Binns' excellent account of John Wyndham's life has only increased my respect for the man and his writing." Maureen Kincaid Speller in Interzone.
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Rating details

26 ratings
4.42 out of 5 stars
5 50% (13)
4 42% (11)
3 8% (2)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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