At the outset of his career Ted Hughes described letter-writing as 'excellent training for conversation with the world', and he was to become a prolific master of this art which combines writing and talking. This selection begins when Hughes was seventeen, and documents the course of a life at once resolutely private but intensely attuned to other lives (including a readership comprising both adults and children); a life pared down to essentials and yet eventful, peripatetic, at times publicly controversial.
"'This is a book, like the letters of Keats, which will be read in 200 years' time.' Philip Hensher, Spectator 'This year's most surprising and rewarding book.' Blake Morrison, Guardian 'Reid's succinct annotation allows the full, unique personality to blaze out unimpeded, and the result is magnificent.' John Carey, Sunday Times"
Christopher Reid has written a number of poetry books, including For and After (2003) and Mr Mouth (2006). From 1991 to 1999, he was Poetry Editor at Faber and Faber, working with Ted Hughes on such books as Tales from Ovid and Birthday Letters. In 2007, he was appointed Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Hull.