This gripping biography mixes intimate detail with a thorough understanding of the social, intellectual, artistic and political climate of the time to unravel the intricate story of the misunderstood genius who wrote Kim, The Jungle Books, and the poem If.Growing up in both England and India, this descendant of a high-achieving family crossed India's established divide between ruler and subject as he explored the urban underworld and dabbled with opium. Recently discovered letters shed light on Kipling's most intimate relationships and help explain how India influenced his personal, political, and literary development. Later, suffering from marital stress, the deaths of his son and daughter, and a wavering sanity, only iron self-control and love of the English countryside enable him to transmute his sadness and growing disillusion into his crystalline late short stories, which are gaining new appreciation today.
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