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CHRISTOPHER ISHERWOOD : A Personal Memoir by John Lehman (Henry Holt: $9.95, illustrated)

July 02, 1989|CHARLES SOLOMON

As a management trainee at Leonard and Virginia Woolf's Hogarth Press, John Lehman arranged for the publication of Isherwood's second novel, "The Memorial," in 1932. The two men quickly developed a friendship that lasted until Isherwood's death in 1986.

This elegant, succinct biography traces Isherwood's life and development as a novelist, beginning with his visits to Germany during the '30s and his efforts to transform his experiences into the so-called "Berlin Stories" (which Lehman also helped to publish).

Drawing on decades of letters and diary entries, Lehman fills in many of the gaps Isherwood left in the autobiographical "Christopher and His Kind." The result is a candid but affectionate portrait of the artist as a young, middle-aged and old man.

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