Lives of the Novelists: A History of Fiction in 294 Lives
This is the most complete history of fiction in English ever published - now in paperback. Arranged in chronological order, the novelist's lives are opinionated, informative, frequently funny and often shocking. Professor Sutherland's authors come from all over the world; their writings illustrate every kind of fiction from gothic, penny dreadfuls and pornography to fantasy, romance and high literature. The book shows the changing forms of the genre, and how the aspirations of authors to divert and sometimes to educate their readers, has in some respects radically changed over the centuries, and in others - such as their interest in sex and relationships - remained remarkably constant.
"'The funniest book I've read all year... it's a riot... Novelists in Professor Sutherland's hands are, above all, lively company' (Evening Standard) 'FT Books of the Year: The fruit of decades of reading and research... A witty, and enjoyably wide-ranging book.' (Carl Wilkinson, FT) 'Sutherland is perfect for this job - all pith and wit... He has made a tricky job look easy' (The Dubliner)"
John Sutherland is Emeritus Lord Northcliffe Professor of English Literature at University College London. Twice on the Booker committee, in 2005 as chairman, he is a regular columnist and critic on radio and television. His books include How to Read a Novel (Profile) , a bestselling trilogy on literary mysteries, and the moving memoir Last Drink to LA.