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Somewhere Becoming Rain: Collected Writings on Philip Larkin Reviews

Somewhere Becoming Rain: Collected Writings on Philip Larkin by Clive James

Somewhere Becoming Rain: Collected Writings on Philip Larkin

Clive James

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: Picador
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Publication date: 3 Oct 2019
ISBN: 9781529028829

Renowned critic, bestselling author and award-winning poet Clive James offers an exploration and celebration of one of his favourite writers, Philip Larkin.

2 stars out of 5
10 Sep 2020

"James is a courteous critic"

James is a courteous critic, however: Thwaite is “meticulous”, and even Larkin’s most recent and hagiographic biographer James Booth, though “not very exciting”, is “an excellent guide to just why a Larkin poem can merit being called great”. James welcomes Booth’s attempt at a corrective biography; it is just a shame he didn’t write that book himself.

Reviews

4 stars out of 5

"His best criticism comes in brief, piercing flashes. "

Opening High Windows for the first time, James writes, “it is something of a shock to find in it some poems one doesn’t recognise. Clipping the poems out of magazines has failed to fit the bill – there were magazines one hadn’t bargained for.” Could any poet today be lucky enough to have a reader awaiting their fourth collection with that level of eagerness?