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THE TIMES & UNCUT MUSIC BOOK OF THE YEAR
Critically-acclaimed and bestselling author Paul Morley’s long-awaited biography of Factory Records co-founder and Manchester icon Tony Wilson.
A BOOK OF THE YEAR
SUNDAY TIMES, NEW STATESMAN, MOJO, LOUDER THAN WAR
‘Compelling . . . befitting its extraordinary subject.’
‘Bracing and often surprisingly tender . . . the perfect monument.’
‘Via Morley’s magical prose Tony Wilson comes back to life . . . inspiring.’
Tony Wilson was a man who became synonymous with his beloved city. As the co-founder of the legendary Factory Records and the Haçienda, he appointed himself a custodian of Manchester’s legacy of innovation and change, becoming a cultural pioneer for the North. To Paul Morley, he was this and much more: bullshitting hustler, flashy showman, inventive broadcaster, self-deprecating chancer, publicity seeker, loyal friend. It was Morley to whom Wilson left a daunting final request: to write this book.
From Manchester with Love is the biography of a man who changed the world around him through sheer
force of personality. In the cultural theatre of Manchester, Tony Wilson broke in and took centre stage.
‘An immersive experience . . . very moving indeed.’
MIRANDA SAWYER, OBSERVER
‘Not just a “biog” but the story of a city’s history and culture and a unique and disappearing figure.’
STUART MACONIE, NEW STATESMAN
‘Morley’s biography is as illuminating on Wilson’s strange ability to hold others in his orbit, even after his death, as it is on the story of his life.’
‘The man/myth Wilson died aged 57 in 2006, but here he burns on fantastically bright.’
Paul Morley writes about things you thought you knew about — and then shows you so many new facets. Reading From Manchester With Love I feel I understand the times we’ve lived through differently, better, and from new angles. The writing is compelling and musical, befitting its extraordinary subject. I never met Tony Wilson, but now I feel as though I knew him well — and I’m sorry that I didn’t.
Eye-opening . . . In this bracing and often surprisingly tender biography, Paul Morley hits all the points between the graffiti and the gravestone, finding more than two sides to Wilson’s mercurial story . . . From Manchester with Love is the perfect monument.
From Manchester With Love is like Wilson in that it assumes the same of its reader: intelligence, bloody-mindedness, a romantic, revolutionary soul. It requires concentration, mixing, as it does, careful interviewing with flights of fancy, revealing detail with time-travelling description. More than a mind map, the book’s peculiarity and expanse and, yes, love, means it becomes an immersive experience. I found it very moving indeed.
Paul Morley’s writing has been delighting and exasperating me since his NME work in the late 1970s. His biography of Anthony H Wilson – TV presenter, music entrepreneur and evangelist, provocateur – From Manchester with Love is by far his best book; the narrative of the man’s life keeps Morley’s wildly digressive style taut(ish). It is not just a “biog” but the story of a city’s history and culture and a unique and disappearing figure: the engaged working-class intellectual challenging the dominance of entitlement and privilege with wit and aesthetics.
Morley’s biography is as illuminating on Wilson’s strange ability to hold others in his orbit, even after his death, as it is on the story of his life . . . fascinating . . . [Morley] is particularly deft on the forces that shaped Wilson . . . [and] particularly good on Wilson's regionalism.
As much a (brilliant) biography of Manchester as it is of Tony Wilson . . . It's a fantastically written, sprawling, superbly research book that's both heartfelt tribute and essential reference work.
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