Philip Larkin: His Life’s Work (1989)

If you’ve never read Philip Larkin’s poetry I’d highly recommend remedying the situation quickly. And to make things easier here are a few popular selections:

Aubade
This Be Verse

High Windows
Days
Sad Steps

I had hopes for Janice Rossen’s Philip Larkin: His Life’s Work. Unfortunately it didn’t deliver and often nitpicked his poetry, jumping around texts to make a point that wasn’t always entirely clear or agreeable. Her attempts to use Martin Amis’ Lucky Jim to explain Larkin himself and his works is more a stumbling block, serving to complicate and confuse more than enlighten.While some of her interpretations do open up Larkins work it pales in comparison to the best bits. The best bits being the factually biographic, Larkin’s own words/actions, and the non-dialectic.

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