Conversations with James Joyce by Arthur Power (Lilliput Press, £7.99)

Arthur Power's book was written in his old age (he lived into his nineties) and though it is relatively short, it conveys more…

Arthur Power's book was written in his old age (he lived into his nineties) and though it is relatively short, it conveys more of Joyce's personality and style of talk than several dozen of the many other books poured out on him. Power was then a voluntary exile in Paris, with ambitions both to paint and write - he fulfilled both in the end - and to enjoy life, which obviously he did. Joyce was not easy to talk to, nor was he a voluble man in his own right, but he is always clear and considered in his opinions and exact in his speech. This book, originally published 25 years ago, was edited at the time by "a Joyce scholar", but it contains a few blips which should have been ironed out and were presumably a product of Power's ageing memory.

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