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    Young Romantics: The Shelleys, Byron and Other Tangled Lives

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    ISBN: 9781408809723
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    AuthorHAY DAISY
    Pub Date03/05/2011
    Publisher: BLOOMSBURY
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    A striking literary biography by a significant and talented young writer

    'The web of our Life is of mingled Yarn' John Keats

    In Young
    Romantics Daisy Hay shatters the myth of the Romantic poet as a
    solitary, introspective genius, telling the story of the communal
    existence of an astonishingly youthful circle. The fiery, generous
    spirit of Leigh Hunt, radical journalist and editor of The Examiner,
    took centre stage. He bound together the restless Shelley and his
    brilliant wife Mary, author of Frankenstein; Mary's feisty
    step-sister Claire Clairmont, who became Byron's lover and the mother of
    his child; and Hunt's charismatic sister-in-law Elizabeth Kent. With
    authority, sparkling prose and constant insight Daisy Hay describes
    their travels in France, Switzerland and Italy, their artistic triumphs,
    their headstrong ways, their grievous losses and their devastating

    Young Romantics explores the history of the
    group, from its inception in Leigh Hunt's prison cell in 1813 to its
    ultimate disintegration in the years following 1822. It encompasses
    tales of love, betrayal, sacrifice and friendship, all of which were
    played out against a background of political turbulence and intense
    literary creativity. This smouldering turmoil of strained relationships
    and insular friendships would ferment to inspire the drama of Frankenstein,
    the heady idealism of Shelley's poetry, and Byron's own self-loathing,
    self-loving public persona.

    Above all the characters are rendered
    on the page with marvellous vitality, and this is a gloriously
    entrancing and revelatory read, the debut of a young biographer of the
    highest calibre and enormous promise.