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Built of Books


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About the Author

Thomas Wright was educated at Saint Thomas More School in Bedford, England. He lectures frequently on Wilde and has written countless articles about him. The author of Oscar Wilde's Table Talk, Wright lives in Genoa and London, and sometimes writes about subjects unconnected with his hero.


Twenty years ago, Wright, a writer and lecturer on Oscar Wilde, decided to read all the books that Wilde had read. Ultimately, he realized that he could not complete this task, but he learned enough to write an engaging literary biography. Because Wilde's father was a preeminent Irish folklorist and his mother a poet, he became a voracious reader, aided by a photographic memory and a talent for speed reading. Having been found guilty in 1895 of "gross indecency" and sentenced to two years in prison, his personal library was sold at auction. Although some valuable first editions and other books with Wilde's inscriptions and annotations were purchased by friends and eventually returned to him, a significant and unknown number were dispersed; Wright was able to locate and examine many of them. Wright's passion and knowledge radiate through this detailed yet readable portrait. Recommended for devotees of Wilde and literary biography as well as those who simply love books.-Anthony Pucci, Notre Dame H.S., Elmira, NY Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

"Revealing portrait of the noted--and notorious--writer, viewed through the prism of the books that educated, inspired and comforted him ... The author accents this remarkable account with pages of Wilde's reading lists, reproductions of annotated books and an index of referenced authors. " - Kirkus Reviews

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