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By Douglas on 12-22-13
William Styron Ranks...
as one of my favorite authors, and his Sophie's Choice as one of my top five all-time favorite books, and so I approached this memoir with much anticipation--and expectation. And Alexandra Styron (much like Susan Cheever in Home Before Dark) proves to be a penetrating and moving biographer of her very complicated and often disturbed father. From his long-standing marriage to his absolute devotion to his work to his tendency toward spiraling depression and bouts with alcohol (read his own account of this in Darkness Visible: A Memoir Of Madness), Alexandra renders a portrait of her father that is at once objective but also tinged with the obvious love and devotion that she felt for her famous father. Highly recommended!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By John on 09-06-11
A Gripping Account
This is a superb biography and you don't even have to be a Styron fan (I'm not) to find it fascinating. The daughter's portrait of her very troubled and demanding father manages somehow to maintain a loving quality within its excoriating account of Styron's bad bargains with his muse. He was clearly a charismatic man, someone who had many famous friends and well-wishers, but he was also demonized by his creative gifts and often unable to connect with his devoted family. The book is beautifully written and the author, who for years trained as an actress, is a very skillful reader.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful