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A Dead Man in Deptford (Burgess, Anthony) by [Burgess, Anthony]
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A Dead Man in Deptford (Burgess, Anthony) Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Length: 272 pages

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Product description

From Publishers Weekly

Burgess's last book, published in England two years ago, shortly before the author's death, is a masterly piece of work. It is an extraordinary reflection on the state of American publishing that the novel had to wait so long for publication here, and then be brought out only by a small but enterprising company like Carroll & Graf. Like Burgess's Nothing Like the Sun 30 years ago (arguably the finest novel ever written about Shakespeare), this volume reflects the author's magical sense of language and his deep immersion in the Elizabethan ethos. The story of the short life of brilliant young playwright Christopher Marlowe is ostensibly told by an actor of the time; so perfectly is the period voice caught that it is hard to believe the novelist was not transcribing contemporary documents. Marlowe is seen as a student at Cambridge, soon caught up in the life of a secret agent, shuttling between England and France as the religious struggles of the time reach their apex in the slaying of Mary Queen of Scots. Himself a skeptic, and an active homosexual (frolicking with the young heir of the powerful Earl of Walsingham), Marlowe manages for several risky years to keep his head above the sectarian waters, working when he can at his plays, ever after "the mighty line." Then some of his fellow conspirators, suspicious of him, fabricate a brawl on a spring evening in a tavern and he is slain, still in his 20s. Burgess's command of his material is absolute; he wrote his student thesis, he tells us, on Marlowe and brings a lifetime's linguistic and fictional gifts to this headlong, shining, cruel portrait of a terrifying-but posthumously glorious-age.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Written to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Marlowe's death in 1593, the late Burgess's final book is essentially a novelization of Charles Nicholl's revisionist biography, The Reckoning (LJ 3/1/94). In Nicholl's view, Marlowe was a secret agent paid by spymaster Francis Walsingham to infiltrate the insurgent Catholic underground. However, as a freethinker and a homosexual, Marlowe had little use for Catholics or Protestants and preferred to spend his time promoting atheism and smoking the new drug tobacco, a habit he likened to "buggery of the lungs." Burgess brilliantly evokes the murky world of Elizabethan politics, where even a person's name is a mystery. Marlowe is also known as Morley and Merlin, and an apprentice playwright answers to Shagspaw, Choxper, and Jacquespere. One of this prolific author's finest books, A Dead Man in Deptford is a worthy companion volume to Burgess's classic Shakespeare novel, Nothing Like the Sun (1964). For all collections.?Edward B. St. John, Loyola Law Sch. Lib., Los Angeles
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2536 KB
  • Print Length: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press; Reprint edition (Feb. 23 2009)
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group Digital, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001GNC7WE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #395,854 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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