‘A fascinating mix of literary criticism, cultural history and memoir … Highly enjoyable’ Sunday Times
How might we live more freely, and will we be happier or lonelier if we do? Rereading The Golden Notebook in her thirties, Lara Feigel discovered that Doris Lessing spoke directly to her as a woman, writer and mother in a way that no other novelist had done. Veering between admiration and fury at the choices Lessing made, Feigel conducts a dazzling investigation into the joys and costs of sexual, psychological, intellectual and political freedom. The result is this genre-defying book: at once a meditation on life and
literature and a daring act of self-exposure.
- For fans of Doris Lessing, but also of Rachel Cusk’s A Life’s Work and Aftermath, Olivia Laing’s To the River and Siri Hustevdt’s A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women
- A rising star of literary biography, Lara Feigel now not only examines the life of a universally celebrated writer, but turns her lens on herself
- The Love-charm of Bombs sold over 8,000 copies across all editions; The Bitter Taste of Victory has sold over 11,000
- A celebration of the power of books to disturb and transform our lives
“An extraordinary meditation on what it means to be a clever, engaged woman two generations after Lessing … A classical, precise use of language … Most compelling …Physically and intellectually intimate”- Guardian, Patrick French
“A fascinating mix of literary criticism, cultural history and memoir so exposing that it can almost make you blush. Feigel writes with singing clarity in prose that sometimes verges on the hypnotic. Her reimagining of Lessing’s home and childhood in what was then Rhodesia is vivid and enthralling … Absorbing and highly enjoyable”Sunday Times, Christina Patterson
Lara Feigel is a Reader in Modern Literature and Culture at King’s College London. She is the author of Literature, Cinema and Politics, 1930–1945 and the editor (with Alexandra Harris) of Modernism on Sea: Art and Culture at the British Seaside and (with John Sutherland) of the New Selected Journals of Stephen Spender. She has also written journalism for various publications, including the Guardian, the Financial Times and Prospect. The Love-charm of Bombs (2013) and her most recent book, The Bitter Taste of Victory (2016), were both published to critical acclaim. Lara lives in West Hampstead, London.