Marsh Biography Award

1989 - David Gilmour for "The Last Leopard"

David Gilmour won the 1989 Marsh Biography Award for his book "The Last Leopard".

David Gilmour's biography of Giuseppe di Lampedusa unearths the life story of the creator of "The Leopard", one of the great novels of the twentieth century. A book whose imagery, once tasted, haunts the reader forever.

"The Leopard" describes the golden era of the nineteenth-century Sicily in all its sensual, fading, aristocratic glory. But beneath the surface lurk Sicily's millenial contagions - corruption, brutality and inequality.

Who wrote this masterpiece, this work of art? The answer is as unlikely as one might hope. This biography acts as a fascinating meditation on what it is that makes a writer.

'Outstandingly good...Lampedusa has found a biographer worthy of The Leopard'- Allan Massie, Daily Telegraph

'A triumph of fine writing: elegant, witty, concise - everything a good biography should be.' - Ian Thomson, The Independent


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