Lucy Hughes-Hallett is the author of Cleopatra: Histories, Dreams and Distortions which was published in 1990 to wide acclaim, and Heroes: Saviours, Traitors and Supermen, published in 2004, which garnered similar praise. Cleopatra won the Fawcett Prize and the Emily Toth Award. Lucy Hughes-Hallett reviews for the Sunday Times. She lives in London.
Praise for 'The Pike': 'Hugely enjoyable ... Hughes-Hallett has a great talent for encapsulating an era or an attitude ...The fact that almost 700 pages flew by bears testimony to how pleasurable and readable those pages were' Sunday Times 'This is a magnificent portrait of a preposterous character ... D'Annunzio was deplorable, brilliant, ludicrous, tragic but above all irresistible, as hundreds of women could testify. His biographer has done him full justice' Francis Wheen, Daily Mail 'Hughes-Hallett chooses not to judge, taking the position that disapproval is not an interesting response. Instead she teases apart the man from his self-made myth... She is never seduced by her subject, repeatedly reminding us of his fundamental lack of empathy, something elegantly encapsulated by the cover image itself: D'Annunzio mirrored, frozen in self-admiration' Daily Telegraph 'A splendid subject for a biography... Hughes-Hallet dances her way through this extraordinary life in a style that is playful, punchy and generally pleasing... In death, as in life, the amazing story of D'Annunzio is painted in primary colours, but with the darkest shadows' Observer 'Beautiful, strange and original... an extraordinarily intimate portrait' New Statesman 'Exceptional book ... Hughes-Hallett has done an admirable job' Scotsman 'The Pike stands out for its imaginative exploration of a poet, although barely read today, still serves as a template for the politics of bombast and bunga-bunga' Spectator 'The story is told by Hughes-Hallett with verve, a fine storyteller's touch and an acute eye for period paraphernalia and sensibility... The whole is enthralling curiosity' Literary Review '[A] richly kaleidoscopic biography ... In this scintillating study, full of wit and irony, she plumbs the depths of D'Annunzio's horrible fascination' The Oldie