Catherine Cookson The Biography

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Born in 1906, the illegitimate daughter of a servant, Catherine Cookson was brought up in Tyneside in one of the poorest communities of the western world. This explores how Cookson determined to escape her situation and did so in a career which produced 97 novels, all still in print. Kathleen Jones has delved into early drafts of Cookson's own autobiography, and has also used as background hours of privately taped conversation in which Cookson discusses much that she chose to keep secret in her own lifetime: her tortured feelings for her mother, her own mental torment and terrors, and her intense and devastating relationship with Nan Smith, who almost succeeded in wrecking Catherine's marriage to Tom.

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This newly revised biography pieces together the uncensored details of Catherine Cookson's troubled and tempestuous life through a unique combination of previously unreleased material and Catherine's own, personal account. In addition to the original conversations between Catherine and Piers Dudgeon, it includes information contributed by some of those central figures in Catherine's life who, prior to her death, she would not allow to be interviewed.

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