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Swaying at the Stove

Rosemary Hill: The Cult of Elizabeth David, 9 December 1999

Elizabeth David: A Biography 
by Lisa Chaney.
Pan, 482 pp., £10, September 1999, 0 330 36762 5
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Waiting at the Kitchen Table. Elizabeth David: The Authorised Biography 
by Artemis Cooper.
Viking, 364 pp., £20, November 1999, 0 7181 4224 1
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... Evelyn Waugh admired her writing and she was praised, often wildly overpraised, as an author. Lisa Chaney goes so far as to describe her as a highly complex and driven artist. David also managed to make domestic cookery glamorous. No comfortable Mrs Beetonish connotations attached to her striking, much photographed good looks. The compound of ...

His Greatest Pretend

Dinah Birch: The man behind Pan, 1 September 2005

Hide-and-Seek with Angels: A Life of J.M. Barrie 
by Lisa Chaney.
Hutchinson, 402 pp., £20, June 2005, 0 09 179539 7
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... and then she lay silent with filmy eyes. When I became a man . . . he was still a boy of 13. Lisa Chaney’s thoughtful new biography rightly identifies the loss of David as the formative experience of Barrie’s life, its influence evident in his earliest stories of Kirriemuir – or ‘Thrums’, as he called it – in the late 1880s, and in his ...

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