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Selina Hastings: The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham

Selina Hastings: The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham

UK 2010, 614 pp., pb,  12.99
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Somerset Maugham's personal life was largely kept hidden. An enormously successful playwright and the author of over a hundred short stories and 21 novels, Maugham early became an expert at concealment. Predominantly homosexual, Maugham made a disastrous marriage to Syrie Wellcome, although deeply in love with the charming but dissolute Gerald Haxton. It was partly to escape his wife that Maugham undertook the extensive journeys in the Far East that inspired so many of his memorable short stories. A talented linguist, during both world wars Maugham worked for British Intelligence. Inbetween he moved in literary and theatrical circles in London, New York and Hollywood and entertained lavishly at his luxurious villa in the south of France. Outwardly his life was richly rewarding, but privately he suffered anguish from an unrequited love affair and a shocking final betrayal.
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