• "A terrific piece of work ... this is a wonderfully writerly book, never less than elegant in construction and execution"

    Marcus Berkmann, Spectator
  • "Written in splendidly elastic prose, each sentence a springboard for the next, it provides a concise, fair and highly readable biography of a singular genius"

    Nigel Hawkes, The Times
  • "Beautifully written and engaging"

    Allan Chapman, BBC History
  • "Ackroyd has a fine eye for the intimate, thorny details that breathe life into biographies"