Author(s): Diana Athill
This is the story of how and why a talented writer came to kill himself.
When Diana Athill met the man she calls Didi, an Egyptian in exile, she fell in love instantly and out of love just as fast. Didi moved into her flat, they shared housework and holidays, and a life of easy intimacy seemed to beckon. But Didi's sweetness and intelligence soon revealed a darker side - he was a gambler, a drinker and a womanizer, impossible to live with but impossible to ignore. With painful honesty, Athill explores the three years they spent together, a period that culminated in Didi's suicide - in her home - an event he described in the journals he left for her to read as 'the one authentic act of my life'.
Diana Athill was born in 1917. She helped Andre Deutsch establish the publishing company that bore his name and worked as an editor for Deutsch for four decades. Athill's distinguished career as an editor is the subject of her acclaimed memoir Stet, which is also published by Granta Books, as are five volumes of memoirs, Instead of a Letter, After a Funeral, Yesterday Morning, Make Believe, Somewhere Towards the End and a novel, Don't Look at Me Like That. In January 2009, she won the Costa Biography Award for Somewhere Towards the End, and was presented with an OBE. She lives in London.