Noel Coward by Philip Hoare
A Biography of

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Synopsis

The definitive biography of one of the twentieth century’s most celebrated and controversial dramatists.

To several generations, actor, playwright, songwriter, and filmmaker Noël Coward (1899-1973) was the very personification of wit, glamour, and elegance. Given unprecedented access to the private papers and correspondence of Coward family members, compatriots, and numerous lovers, Samuel Johnson Prize-winning biographer Philip Hoare has produced an illuminating and sophisticated biography of Coward, whose relentless drive for success and approval fueled the stunning bursts of creativity that launched the once-painfully middle class boy from the suburbs of London into a pantheon of theatrical deities that includes Gilbert and Sullivan, Oscar Wilde, and George Bernard Shaw. As much the embodiment of a lifestyle as an actual inhabitant of it, Coward’s carefully cultivated image defined the aspirations of untold numbers of actors, artists, and writers who succeeded him, and Hoare’s meticulously researched biography peels away the layers of this complex persona to reveal the man underneath it all, whom The Times of London decreed upon his death to be the most versatile of all the great figures of the English theater.
 

About Philip Hoare

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Philip Hoare is the author of biographies of Stephen Tennant and Noel Coward and the historical studies Wilde's Last Stand, Spike Island and England's Lost Eden. He is also the writer and presenter of the BBC Arena film, The Hunt for Moby-Dick. He lives in Southampton, England.
 
Published May 21, 2013 by Simon & Schuster. 624 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography, Literature & Fiction, Cooking. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Noel Coward

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 A full-scale life of the towering English songwriter and playwright.

Jun 24 2010 | Read Full Review of Noel Coward: A Biography of N...

Publishers Weekly

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Like his life of Stephen Tennant, Serious Pleasures (1990), Hoare's substantial biography of Coward is fastidiously researched and documented. The author traces Coward's colorful family history back t

Jul 29 1996 | Read Full Review of Noel Coward: A Biography of N...

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