Born to Be Posthumous The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gorey The definitive biography of Edward Gorey the eccentric master of macabre nonsense From The Gashlycrumb Tinies to The Doubtful Guest Edward Gorey s wickedly funny and deliciously sinist

  • Title: Born to Be Posthumous: The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gorey
  • Author: Mark Dery
  • ISBN: 0316188549
  • Page: 366
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The definitive biography of Edward Gorey, the eccentric master of macabre nonsense.From The Gashlycrumb Tinies to The Doubtful Guest, Edward Gorey s wickedly funny and deliciously sinister little books have influenced our culture in innumerable ways, from the works of Tim Burton and Neil Gaiman to Lemony Snicket Some even call him the Grandfather of Goth.But who was this The definitive biography of Edward Gorey, the eccentric master of macabre nonsense.From The Gashlycrumb Tinies to The Doubtful Guest, Edward Gorey s wickedly funny and deliciously sinister little books have influenced our culture in innumerable ways, from the works of Tim Burton and Neil Gaiman to Lemony Snicket Some even call him the Grandfather of Goth.But who was this man, who lived with over twenty thousand books and six cats, who roomed with Frank O Hara at Harvard, and was known in the late 1940s, no less to traipse around in full length fur coats, clanking bracelets, and an Edwardian beard An eccentric, a gregarious recluse, an enigmatic auteur of whimsically morbid masterpieces, yes but who was the real Edward Gorey behind the Oscar Wildean pose He published over a hundred books and illustrated works by Samuel Beckett, T.S Eliot, Edward Lear, John Updike, Charles Dickens, Hilaire Belloc, Muriel Spark, Bram Stoker, Gilbert Sullivan, and others At the same time, he was a deeply complicated and conflicted individual, a man whose art reflected his obsessions with the disquieting and the darkly hilarious.Based on newly uncovered correspondence and interviews with personalities as diverse as John Ashbery, Donald Hall, Lemony Snicket, Neil Gaiman, and Anna Sui, BORN TO BE POSTHUMOUS draws back the curtain on the eccentric genius and mysterious life of Edward Gorey Get A Copy Kindle Store StoresAudibleBarnes NobleWalmart eBooksApple BooksGoogle PlayAbebooksBook DepositoryIndigoAlibrisBetter World BooksIndieBoundLibraries Or buy for Hardcover, 512 pages Published November 6th 2018 by Little, Brown and Company first published 2018 More Details ISBN 0316188549 ISBN13 9780316188548 Edition Language English Characters Edward Gorey Other Editions 5 All Editions Add a New Edition Combine Less Detail edit details Friend Reviews To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up Reader QA To ask other readers questions about Born to Be Posthumous, please sign up Popular Answered Questions Does this biography include illustrations from Goreys work like 28 days ago See all 2 answers Michael It has a few, scattered through the book, but not many flag See 1 question about Born to Be Posthumous Lists with This Book Best Non Fiction of 2018 335 books 150 voters Biography Published in Year 2018 148 books 10 voters More lists with this book Community Reviews Showing 1 30 Rating details Sort Default Filter Dec 05, 2018 Miranda Reads rated it really liked it Shelves littlebrownandcompany, received to review, arc 3.5 stars But did anyone really know him Did he even want to be known. Edward Gorey is famously infamous Being nil, Gorey decided, was the safest policy. His work provided the scaffolding and inspiration for Neil Gaiman s Coraline, for Tim Burton s creeptacular movies, for Lemony Snicket s Series of Unfortunate Events and so much.And yet, surprisingly little is known about him He wrote many delightfully macabre books, which alternately impressed and horrified publishers There s so li 3.5 stars But did anyone really know him Did he even want to be known. Edward Gorey is famously infamous Being nil, Gorey decided, was the safest policy. His work provided the scaffolding and inspiration for Neil Gaiman s Coraline, for Tim Burton s creeptacular movies, for Lemony Snicket s Series of Unfortunate Events and so much.And yet, surprisingly little is known about him He wrote many delightfully macabre books, which alternately impressed and horrified publishers There s so little heartless work around, said Gorey So I feel I am filling a small but necessary gap His books could never fit into one category, which often resulted in his work being shuffled off to the side Publishers were reluctant to market them to children, fearing their morbid subject matter and gleeful amorality were inappropriate But Gorey never let that stop him he quietly puttered around with his odd little books and while he has faded from pop culture, his immortal influence lives on.What a cool biography And you don t see me saying that very often I never knew much about Gorey but I was definitely aware of Gaiman, Snicket and Burton so I had a lot of fun getting to know the man behind the murders I love how Gorey kept making his horrendously amoral books solely because he felt like it I now have this huge itch to pick up everything Gorey has ever written and just read it cover to cover especially his murderous ABC books The book really emphasizes Gorey s commitment to his incredibly fine line art drawings which have an etching like feel and I totally agree I loved all of the illustrations that the author included They were so intricate and detailed truly amazing that those were hand drawn I honestly regretted that there were not shown in this biography Dery described the images so well that I kept wishing that he included I really appreciated how much time and effort the author spent researching this novel the sources section alone took up nearly sixty pages but, and this is of a personal preference, but this book felt too detailed.There were a few times where it really felt like we were circling back over and over to rehash the same topic.For example, one thing the author never tired of discussing was Gorey s sexuality The author states several times that Gorey s own preference, of course, was that he be seen not as a type a gay artist or even an artist but as an individual. And yet, every few chapters, we would spend pages analyzing minute crumbs of Gorey s sex life or lack thereof Everyone who encountered him assumed he was gay, yet he maintained, to his dying day, that he was a neutral. It just became a bit wearisome the fourth time we went around the whole was Gorey gay or asexual shtickOverall I really enjoyed my foray into Goreyland and I am absolutely excited to pick up a few of his novels Life, in Goreyland, is a random walk, full of mystery and melancholy, punctuated by the unpredictable and inexplicable. All quotes are from an uncorrected proof and are subject to change upon publication flag 175 likesLike see review View all 14 comments Oct 06, 2018 Jeffrey Keeten rated it it was amazing Shelves artists, victorian, gothic, nonfiction Only now are art critics, scholars of children s literature, historians of book cover design and commercial illustration, and chroniclers of the gay experience in postwar America waking up to the fact that Gorey is a critically neglected genius His consummately original vision expressed in virtuosic illustrations and poetic texts but articulated with equal verve in book jacket design, verse plays, puppet shows, and costumes and sets for ballets and Broadway productions has earned him a place Only now are art critics, scholars of children s literature, historians of book cover design and commercial illustration, and chroniclers of the gay experience in postwar America waking up to the fact that Gorey is a critically neglected genius His consummately original vision expressed in virtuosic illustrations and poetic texts but articulated with equal verve in book jacket design, verse plays, puppet shows, and costumes and sets for ballets and Broadway productions has earned him a place in the history of American art and letters I first experienced Edward Gorey without even knowing I was in his world The introduction to PBS s long running series MYSTERY was where I first brushed up against the uniqueness of Gorey s imagination I was in 8th grade I can remember sitting there completely taken aback, unsure of what I d just seen, but I knew I d never seen anything like it before Every week I watched the opening very carefully looking for anything that I missed the week before It never occured to me to find out who the creator was of this wonderful opening or pursue other work by him I wasn t a fully developed researcher and collector of those things that pleased meyet So when Little, Brown contacted me to see if I was interested in reviewing a biography of Edward Gorey, I felt a whole host of emotions A Even though I had occasionally browsed his books, I had never really allowed myself to be seduced by his work B I d been in a Victorian phase for many years now and still had never delved into the carefully cross hatched Victorian figures that Gorey created C This book could be the impetus to encourage me to finally launch a full out investigation of all things Gorey D I was thrilled with the opportunity to maybe finally close a circle begun when I was 13 years old Gorey was all that I hoped he would be He was a voracious reader He took a book with him everywhere so that any time he found himself waiting in line or stuck in a boring situation he could pull out his book and take himself elsewhere He had over 21,000 books in his library at his death He watched over 1,000 movies a year Think that is impossible Not if you don t sleep He was a huge fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, cats, and, most of all, Balanchine s ballet performances To list all the things he enjoyed would maybe be contained in a scroll ten feet long if one wrote them in small, spidery script Gorey considered himself asexual Thomas Garvey coins the useful term glass closet to describe that strange cultural zone inhabited by people in the public eye who simultaneously operate as both gay and straight Gorey kept perfectly mum about his true nature to the press he only spoke about it in his art I think that Gorey did not want to be pigeonholed as anything really He was fussy about just being considered an artist when he really saw himself as a writer first He was flamboyant in his appearance with wearing floor length fur coats year round and sporting rings on every finger Supposedly, there was a lot of gay coding into his artwork for book covers that he designed for writers such as Herman Melville for Anchor Books Looking at any form of art with an eye for overt or hidden symbols always makes me a bit nervous Sometimes you find what you are looking for because that is what you want to find That all said, every crush that Gorey had throughout his life was some form of unrequited love for a member of the same sex I wonder when we will reach a time when we are not categorized by our sexual preferences Gay musicians artists politicians, etc are still pressured by interest groups to declare their sexual preference, but by doing so they are generally suddenly defined first by their sexual preference, and everything else they do almost becomes a footnote to that revelation The melancholy deaths of Gorey s children.His books were dominated by infanticides They caused parents to be uneasy and made it hard for booksellers to categorize his work The awkward size of his books was also difficult and forced many publisher s to design counter displays for his books at the register Kids, in general, I have found, love his books The creative deaths of the children in his books could be scary, but we do like to be frightened, especially when Gorey leads us onward to an ending that leaves us smiling He didn t mind confusing us either N is for Neville who died of ennui Or how about this one Still later Gerald did a terrible thing to Elsie with a saucepan What terrible thing could anyone do to another person with a saucepan The mind of the reader was forced to ponder and ponder some Usually, I ended up laughing at the scattershot directions that my mind went, trying to pluck the right thread that would lead me to where Gorey intended me to go Or maybe he wanted the readers to lead himself to his own meaning Clavius Frederick EarbrassOne of my favorite stories of his was The Unstrung Harp , which was about a writer named C lavius F rederick Earbrass The best novel ever written about a novelist, Graham Greene called it in all apparent seriousness The book covered all the hazards of a writer s life disappointing sales, inadequate publicity, worse than inadequate royalties, idiotic or criminal reviews, terrors of the deadline and the blank page The idea to have Gorey design the sets for the Broadway production of Dracula was simply a moment of brilliance He threw himself completely into the project with every leather bound volume lovingly rendered of the books in Dr Deward s sanatorium library. The bats, skeletons, death s head pansies, coffins, mummified corpses, Dracula s watch chain strung with teeth, the drapes, and the exquisite wallpaper were all drawn with delicate care This showed the world that Gorey was much than just a cartoonist or children s book author or really categorized any which way except that he was capable of showing exceptional talent in whatever medium he chose to express it The show ran for 925 performances over three years and made Gorey a wealthy man I was constantly, gleefully googling arcane references while reading this book Gorey s interests were wide and varied By reading about his interests, I expanded my own passions, and really anyone who cares about the creative process should read this book He was a Renaissance man, not only in talent but also in the way he found the world so fascinating People might have been disappointing, but then he could always create acceptable characters with the nib of pen I will certainly be pursuing many lines of inquiry inspired by this book Mark Dery will take you on a journey into the development of a creative mind and introduce you to a man who figured out a way to live his life the way he wanted to So few of us get that opportunity My thanks to Little, Brown who supplied me with a free copy in exchange for an honest review If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit also have a Facebook blogger page at flag 150 likesLike see review View all 20 comments Toni Jeffrey, this book sounds extraordinary, I must look into this You re review is a delight with pictures Thanks so much Cheers Jan 29, 2019 10 02PM Jeffrey Keeten Toni wrote Jeffrey, this book sounds extraordinary, I must look into this You re review is a delight with pictures Thanks so much Cheers You are Toni wrote Jeffrey, this book sounds extraordinary, I must look into this You re review is a delight with pictures Thanks so much Cheers You are welcome Thank you I m glad you enjoyed the review When the publisher approached me with this my first thought was I know hardly anything about the man This book made me feel like I met him, hung out with him, and had numerous conversations wiht him Jan 30, 2019 06 21AM Nov 17, 2018 Montzalee Wittmann rated it it was amazing Born to Be Posthumous The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gorey by Mark Deryis a book I requested and the review is voluntary.I didn t even know who Edward Gorey was when I started this book, is that bad Well I sure do now I love how this book is written It is full of character and is very colorful just like the subject Each chapter heading is unique, and the interviews, the subjects, the content, and the personal details are totally remarkably I started out knowing nothing Born to Be Posthumous The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gorey by Mark Deryis a book I requested and the review is voluntary.I didn t even know who Edward Gorey was when I started this book, is that bad Well I sure do now I love how this book is written It is full of character and is very colorful just like the subject Each chapter heading is unique, and the interviews, the subjects, the content, and the personal details are totally remarkably I started out knowing nothing about this man and ended up knowing than I ever expected to Brilliantly written about quite an interesting person I thank Little, Brown and Company for letting me learn so much from this talented author flag 12 likesLike see review Dec 20, 2018 John rated it liked it I m less than thrilled with the idea of readers receiving a book from a publisher in exchange for a review I m unsure why that is permitted at all, but at least it is noted when it occurs.I found this book neither good nor bad Does it capture Gorey s unique genius No Does it focus too much on his sexuality Yes.Meh Stick to Gorey himself flag 8 likesLike see review View 1 comment Dec 09, 2018 Samantha rated it it was ok Shelves 2018 So, are we just all gonna ignore the fact that Dery posthumously outed Gorey Page 136 If such articles are to be believed, then Gorey wasn t necessarily gay, even though he was a lifelong bachelor who dressed in necklaces and furs.he was just asexual, a kind of lovable eunich Page 138 Gorey kept perfectly mum about his true nature to the press he only spoke about it in his art And in a way, to be honest, the glass closet was appropriate to his artistic persona, which was neither her So, are we just all gonna ignore the fact that Dery posthumously outed Gorey Page 136 If such articles are to be believed, then Gorey wasn t necessarily gay, even though he was a lifelong bachelor who dressed in necklaces and furs.he was just asexual, a kind of lovable eunich Page 138 Gorey kept perfectly mum about his true nature to the press he only spoke about it in his art And in a way, to be honest, the glass closet was appropriate to his artistic persona, which was neither here nor there, but locked in a kind of alienated stasis Page 139 In New York, Gorey came closer to self identifying as gay IF ONLY IN HIS MIND AND TO A FEW CLOSE FRIENDS emphasis mine than any other time in his life Page 174 Gorey, of course, would ve let out a theatrical groan at the suggestion that he was some sort of agent provocateur for the incipient counter culture Oh, cool, Dery admits even Gorey wouldn t have been on board with all this Gorey himself has, fairly famously, publicly stated that he was generally sexless and asexual From Ascending Peculiarity I m neither one thing nor the other particularly I am fortunate in that I am apparently reasonably undersexed or something I ve never said that I was gay and I ve never said that I wasn t what I m trying to say is that I am a person before I am anything else Yeah, yeah, if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it might be a duck, but isn t that up to the maybe duck to decide Gorey might have been gay Or not Either way, it wouldn t have mattered, because it was up to him to decide how public he wanted to be with something as private as his sexuality Dery very clearly overstepped a boundary Dick move, man You don t out another person, ever.Dery spends nearly the entire book pushing an agenda that purports Gorey is an underappreciated gay icon, which he might beif he ever self identified as gay WHICH HE NEVER DID First of all, asexual is a valid identity, and to steamroll over Gorey s declaration as such does a disservice and is incredibly disrespectful to those who also identify as asexual a identity wholly misunderstood and underrepresented Secondly, BIOGRAPHIES SHOULDN T HAVE AGENDAS Biographies are based in fact A good biographer tells the story of a person s life, all based in truths Wanna start espousing theories about a subject Write a theoretical art history book Write cultural criticism You could literally take this exact book and just change the title to not imply this was a biography But none of that happened Dery took information, developed a loose theory his subject was conveniently too dead to refute, and ran with it That is not a biography This should never have been called a biography And frankly, I couldn t get past the outing I after the first hundred pages, I hate read the rest of this book, because I love Edward Gorey so damn much, and you, Mark Dery, RUINED IT Who cares if Gorey was gay For a writer like Gorey, his sexuality, or lack thereof if you follow his own comments rather than Dery s, is wholly irrelevant to the collected body of work Honestly, based on his childhood and his comments about children, I d say looking at his views on family in relation to his work would be way interesting, and relevant Gorey clearly wanted to keep his sexuality private, for whatever reason, and that was his prerogative For someone who claims to admire Gorey as much as he does, Mark Dery sure was disrespectful of him.A book about a great subject does not make that book great.As much as I want to give this book one star, I can t It s still well written and well researched, even if it completely disregards what a biography should be The second star is also to maybe give Dery the benefit of the doubt and hope that maybe, just maybe, he wasn t the one who picked that title His back flap bio indicates he has a history of cultural criticism which would make a Gorey as gay icon treatise make a lot sense Just as photographers sometimes get blamed for retouching gaffes they didn t make spoiler alert most of the time, the magazines do their own retouching, and it has nothing to do with the photographer , maybe Dery is the victim of a bad title someone else picked In any case, Dery outed Gorey, and that s inexcusable flag 5 likesLike see review View all 6 comments Sem Random person dropping in to say that a quick flip through this book brought me to the same conclusion and now that I ve read your review I won t feel Random person dropping in to say that a quick flip through this book brought me to the same conclusion and now that I ve read your review I won t feel guilty about not giving it a fighting chance I had such hopes Jan 09, 2019 01 13PM Michael Dery could certainly have dealt with Gorey s sexual orientation in fewer pages than he chose, but to say that he outed Gorey is not accurate Gorey Dery could certainly have dealt with Gorey s sexual orientation in fewer pages than he chose, but to say that he outed Gorey is not accurate Gorey was asked about the issue in many interviews, and when he decided to answer, he did so openly He said that he was asexual, with a gay orientation he felt little desire to explore Jan 30, 2019 02 32AM Jan 24, 2019 Thomas Pluck rated it it was amazing It illuminates without washing out the wonder of the works or the man himself A worthwhile read, like discovering Gorey s unique world again flag 3 likesLike see review Dec 07, 2018 Tony rated it really liked it Shelves biography BORN TO BE POSTHUMOUS 2018 Mark Dery.This is an excellent study appreciation of Edward Gorey The full title runs on The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gory I didn t know much about Gorey before reading this book, but that has changed it all Gorey has a big following I can recognize his work, but I am not a collector The only short coming of this book was its paucity of its illustrations Although there were many reproductions of his work, there were too few He BORN TO BE POSTHUMOUS 2018 Mark Dery.This is an excellent study appreciation of Edward Gorey The full title runs on The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gory I didn t know much about Gorey before reading this book, but that has changed it all Gorey has a big following I can recognize his work, but I am not a collector The only short coming of this book was its paucity of its illustrations Although there were many reproductions of his work, there were too few He had an amazing output, most of which are hard to find because they were snapped up by his fans I suspect that most of us know his work from the PBS series, Mystery If you want to about this talented man, read this book Although its size is daunting, the pages fly by very quickly flag 2 likesLike see review Dec 27, 2018 Mark Wheaton rated it it was amazing That incredibly rare artist s bio that makes you think you would ve liked to know the subject IRL flag 2 likesLike see review Jan 12, 2019 Betsy Decillis rated it liked it This is a book that reveals about the author than it does the subject matter Based on the cover and the description, I expected to be swept up into an incredible journey about an incredible man That did not happen Whenever I did lock into the book and writing, that would be about when the author s extreme interest in whether Gorey was homosexual or asexual would rear its ugly head It became uncomfortable and downright disrespectful to the man he was writing about In the end, the author This is a book that reveals about the author than it does the subject matter Based on the cover and the description, I expected to be swept up into an incredible journey about an incredible man That did not happen Whenever I did lock into the book and writing, that would be about when the author s extreme interest in whether Gorey was homosexual or asexual would rear its ugly head It became uncomfortable and downright disrespectful to the man he was writing about In the end, the author would do well to learn a few lessons from Gorey Just be and be comfortable with the empty spaces flag 2 likesLike see review View 2 comments Apr 25, 2018 Anmiryam rated it really liked it As a fan of Edward Gorey s work since I discovered a copy of The Curious Sofa on my parents shelves at about age ten, I have often wanted to know about the enigmatic flamboyant artist behind the work Mark Dery brilliantly examines the complexities of both the man and his work the philosophical underpinnings that make the art and the man so enticing and so difficult to pin down in some concise essential way Given Gorey s elusiveness as a subject, it s no wonder it s taken nearly two dec As a fan of Edward Gorey s work since I discovered a copy of The Curious Sofa on my parents shelves at about age ten, I have often wanted to know about the enigmatic flamboyant artist behind the work Mark Dery brilliantly examines the complexities of both the man and his work the philosophical underpinnings that make the art and the man so enticing and so difficult to pin down in some concise essential way Given Gorey s elusiveness as a subject, it s no wonder it s taken nearly two decades following his death for a full length biography to be published If you aren t deeply familiar with Gorey s books it is well worth having copies of the anthologies Amphigorey,Amphigorey Too,Amphigorey Also, and Amphigorey Again to hand to look at while reading this biography Where Dery excels is in his interrogation of Gorey s art which will be meaningless to readers without the visual reference points in memory flag 2 likesLike see review Dec 26, 2018 NinjaMuse rated it liked it Shelves lgbtq, non fiction, memoir and bio, read in 2018 In brief The life of Edward Gorey, drawn largely from interviews, letters, and literary analysis, and occasionally illustrated.Thoughts I wanted so badly to like this a lot than I did I like Gorey s work and I was curious to learn about him, especially since I ve seen stuff floating around that he was ace And then, while reading, there was so much else about him that resonated his determined individuality, his gothic leanings, a fair bit of his attitudes in general He really felt In brief The life of Edward Gorey, drawn largely from interviews, letters, and literary analysis, and occasionally illustrated.Thoughts I wanted so badly to like this a lot than I did I like Gorey s work and I was curious to learn about him, especially since I ve seen stuff floating around that he was ace And then, while reading, there was so much else about him that resonated his determined individuality, his gothic leanings, a fair bit of his attitudes in general He really felt like a kindred spirit in a lot of ways, or at least someone who could and should be a role model for what Dery calls, the weirdos And, like, I don t really read biographies, that s not generally my thing at all, but this one didn t seem great Dery s writing s good and he s done a lot of research and thinking, that s clear He mentions stuff that was going on concurrently with periods of Gorey s life, like New York gay culture and the crime ridden Chicago he grew up in, and links that to what Gorey was doing or not doing, as the case may be , and there s also a lot of space devoted to Gorey s books, what their content can tell us about Gorey s inner life, and the evolution of his work over time All good things, right Except that Dery s stance is very curious and I m having a hard time parsing the reasons why I feel that There s the literary analysis, of course, which Dery stretches as far as he can manage and occasionally then some Love of detail and precision Good Frequent gay subtext Works for me Tall bearded men always being self insert characters Um And there are similar stretches based on actual known details, starting with Gorey worked in small windowless rooms, which must be psychologically meaningful and not just because he didn t want distraction , moving through, Gorey didn t want to talk about his private life and history so clearly he had a traumatic childhood , and ending with Gorey as a queer man, which is a whole other paragraph There s also some weirdness about Gorey s writing and art being so great and so unique and Gorey being such an individual that everyone knew a different side of him, that is so unusual and nobody else has different personalities in different contexts ever.And now, the queer stuff This is the most curious part of a curious stance I don t know if Dery s gay and doing something similar to me here, wanting a cultural figure to share your orientation so much you ll overlook other valid options , or if he s straight and slightly clueless, but, um Well There s no denying that Gorey was romantically interested in men, embraced camp, had gay friends and queer characters, and had some stereotypically gay interests He also described himself as asexual and undersexed and there s no evidence he ever had than one bout of unpleasant adolescent sex and maybe made out a few times To me that reads as homoromantic ace demi To Dery at various points, that s closeted gay man who just won t talk about sex because he s of a certain generation , gay man so traumatized by bad sex he swore off it , and probably asexual gay man , and yes, that s not consistent and yes, there are lots of uses of asexual that do not jive with current usage Which is weird because Dery s done his research into gay culture during Gorey s lifetime but he seems not to have cared much about what asexuality even is He just discounts that it s even possible for Gorey to have be ace until the last chapter, where he backtracks.Sigh.To be fair, Dery s still pretty level and factual and doesn t make totally unsubstantiated claims It s just that he doesn t totally support them either and there are definitely instances where his reading of the facts and my reading of them didn t line up I m inclined to take Gorey at face value Dery s inclined to say, but that could be an act, maybe he didn t mean it And yes, I get that it s hard to write a bio of someone who was very private and I think Dery s done a good job considering, it s just between the assumptions and the odd tone and his treatment of Gorey s sexuality and presentation I found it lacking And off putting And disappointing and sometimes frustrating.I m glad I read it and I did learn a good deal, and I d even still rec this to people who re interested but with a very strong suggestion to read it critically and make up your own mind about who Gorey was Don t necessarily stick to Dery s version of him and yes, I fully admit that I really, really want Gorey to have been ace I also find it off putting that Dery bases a lot of his evidence for Gorey being gay on well, he fits the stereotype and if he wasn t gay, why was he drawing homoerotic subtext Warnings If you re gay or gay friendly, be prepared for stereotyping If you re aspec or aspec friendly, be prepared for mild erasure Use of the f slur in quotes, and of phrases like the gays and the homosexual in ways that suggest Dery s tried to capture historical mindsets I think the n word popped up in a quote at one point too, but I don t have the book with me to check.6 10 flag 1 likeLike see review Nov 01, 2018 Lael Braday rated it it was amazing The heartbreak of a good biography is finding out that the artist whose work sings to you is not the person of your imagination It s almost like a friendship breaking up over irreconcilable differences The joy of a great biography is reveling in all the nooks and crannies of the artist whose work speaks to you Mark Dery s representation of Edward Gorey s life is well researched including interviews with friends, family, and colleagues and often feels too intimate, probing as deeply as possibl The heartbreak of a good biography is finding out that the artist whose work sings to you is not the person of your imagination It s almost like a friendship breaking up over irreconcilable differences The joy of a great biography is reveling in all the nooks and crannies of the artist whose work speaks to you Mark Dery s representation of Edward Gorey s life is well researched including interviews with friends, family, and colleagues and often feels too intimate, probing as deeply as possible into an ultra private man whose public persona was a purposeful put on The brilliant title and chapter headings are Gorey esque A Suspiciously Normal Childhood, Sacred Monsters, Epater le Bourgeois, Nursery Crimes, etc Dery has sectioned Gorey s life into childhood, education, career moves, and his various obsessions, the main ones being literature high and low, silent movies, and the ballet choreography of George Balanchine, with their corresponding closely knit fan groups Any Gorey fan can learn something new in this biography, for the man was quite complex, and he apparently needed little sleep, working on something every moment possible, from his little books sold successfully at Gotham Book Mart, through his book cover art and collaborations, to his work in theater and television Though far from an open book, Gorey s career flowed easily through profound and lasting friendships, Dery presenting the development and arc of such friendships with a light touch Themes running throughout the biography are Gorey s complex parental relationships, his tendency to keep himself to himself while handing out sardonic opinions like candy, and speculation upon his sexual orientation Though he d answered the question of his sexual orientation, speculation continued, with evidence pointed out in his work and life Though Dery may reference the evidence and speculation a bit much, he offers a comprehensive gathering of Gorey s work and a well thought out timeline of his life, with a wonderful takeaway that Gorey made his art to please himself It s a must read biography of a man as interesting and mysterious as his little books of Victorian Edwardian children suffering unusual demises Little, Brown Company graciously sent me an ARC of this fantabulous biography for an honest review flag 1 likeLike see review Jan 27, 2019 Phoebe rated it it was amazing Shelves adult, biography Few illustrators had as much impact on me as a kid as Edward Gorey from the covers of the John Bellairs books to the Shrinking of Treehorn the Gashlycrumb Tinies with words as fascinating as the pictures and like most people I thought he must be a long dead Victorian artist However, he was born in the Midwest and educated at Harvard he did time in the Army and lived for many years in Manhattan, before moving to Cape Cod in the 70s He was eccentric and brilliant, maybe gay but he perpetua Few illustrators had as much impact on me as a kid as Edward Gorey from the covers of the John Bellairs books to the Shrinking of Treehorn the Gashlycrumb Tinies with words as fascinating as the pictures and like most people I thought he must be a long dead Victorian artist However, he was born in the Midwest and educated at Harvard he did time in the Army and lived for many years in Manhattan, before moving to Cape Cod in the 70s He was eccentric and brilliant, maybe gay but he perpetually described himself as asexual or neutral and from his macabre art one would think disturbed This book is a joyfully intellectual exploration of a man who remained a mystery to most of his friends and family the author suggests that the persona he chose to display fur coats, beringed fingers, Victorian beard, flamboyant mannerisms was a protection against a deeply shy and introverted nature Discussions of his artistic style and influences are as carefully and respectfully presented as the biographical detail, resulting in a deeply interesting and satisfying book that provokes thought after the last page is read An impressive and illuminating book from start to finish, about an iconic figure in the world of art and literature One comes away from this book feeling a sense of affection for him, a rare thing in biography Adult content flag 1 likeLike see review Jan 12, 2019 Nickie rated it really liked it This has turned out to be one of the most dog eared books I ve read since Jerusalem, by Alan Moore In the early 1980 s I worked as the psychedelic buyer of used vinyl at a record store in Santa Cruz and one of my regular customers was a young man named Russell Russell quickly discovered my dark sense of humour and one night we met to walk through a graveyard and then through the redwood forest at Henry Cowell State Park, which was entirely pitch black, we didn t make it very far, since we di This has turned out to be one of the most dog eared books I ve read since Jerusalem, by Alan Moore In the early 1980 s I worked as the psychedelic buyer of used vinyl at a record store in Santa Cruz and one of my regular customers was a young man named Russell Russell quickly discovered my dark sense of humour and one night we met to walk through a graveyard and then through the redwood forest at Henry Cowell State Park, which was entirely pitch black, we didn t make it very far, since we didn t think to bring flashlights Anyway, Russell gifted me with Amphigorey, which he felt I needed, I guess at some point he d asked me if I was familiar with Edward Gorey, which I wasn t at the time amazingly enough I hope one of these days to find Russell again to thank him for that gift, for as most who know me are aware, I am a great fan of Mr Gorey s creations This was a fun in depth read for me, revisiting many of the books that are in my collection and learning about the enigmatic and ever fascinating Gorey The dog ears were caused by extraordinary insights and some personal observations of highly creative people being echoed by the author Highly recommended flag 1 likeLike see review Sep 10, 2018 Zack rated it really liked it This should be the last place you start your experience of Edward Gorey Not because this book is bad, in fact it is quite good, but in order to appreciate this biography you really must be familiar with Gorey s work And when I say familiar, I mean than just having read the Gashlycrumb Tinies Gorey was a many out of time and place but also of a conglomeration of particulars, and Mark Dery does an admirable job illustrating the man who really was, and wanted to be, an enigma There is some This should be the last place you start your experience of Edward Gorey Not because this book is bad, in fact it is quite good, but in order to appreciate this biography you really must be familiar with Gorey s work And when I say familiar, I mean than just having read the Gashlycrumb Tinies Gorey was a many out of time and place but also of a conglomeration of particulars, and Mark Dery does an admirable job illustrating the man who really was, and wanted to be, an enigma There is some pop psychoanalyzing and some application of various social theories, but they are minimal and don t really detract from the book Dery does spend much time reviewing particular works of Gorey s in relation to the period of life he was in this can be quite frustrating IF you are not quite familiar with Gorey s work Gorey was a man devoted to his interests and obsessions, so in addition to a biography of Gorey, this book is also very much a biography of things, the things with Gorey loved Balanchine or at least which held his attention for sustained periods of time Buffy It is interesting to note that Frank O Hara figures as a major figure in this work, however, in biographies of O Hara City Poet being an example Gorey barely gets a mention It does make one wonder if that is due to the fullness of O Hara s social circle or the O Hara biographers just don t know how to approach Gorey Dery includes O Hara and many other Gorey friends and infatuations in amazing depth for a many who had a very unique social life Dery has been able to make very interesting connections and discoveries IF you love Edward Gorey, this is worth a read Oh, the of it all flag 1 likeLike see review Dec 16, 2018 Cindy Richard rated it it was amazing I thoroughly enjoyed this biography about Edward Gorey It was so well written that it was just as entertaining as a novel, but it also contained deep insights about Gorey and his work I marked several passages that I plan to return to and think deeply about Last year, I identified about 20 artists that I would count as informal mentors, and Gorey was on list I ve always been intrigued by his individuality and the originality of his work naturally, I was thrilled to hear that this biog I thoroughly enjoyed this biography about Edward Gorey It was so well written that it was just as entertaining as a novel, but it also contained deep insights about Gorey and his work I marked several passages that I plan to return to and think deeply about Last year, I identified about 20 artists that I would count as informal mentors, and Gorey was on list I ve always been intrigued by his individuality and the originality of his work naturally, I was thrilled to hear that this biography was published I had no idea he was so prolific illustrator, author, playwright, set designer, book cover designer, animation, and the list goes on I m looking forward to revisiting some of his work and I ve booked a trip to the Edward Gorey house in Yarmouth If you have any interest in Gorey at all, you must read this book flag 1 likeLike see review Nov 23, 2018 Lisa Rector rated it really liked it You never really choose anything It s all presented to you, and then you have alternatives An enlightening discussion about the semi mysterious person known as Edward Ted Gorey, who created a disturbing montage of enticing images, and unsettling books, that have captured the attention of numerous admirers The explanatory excavation of various works, such as The Unstrung Harp, The Doubtful Guest, The Gashlycrumb Tinies, and all of the others, including the truly hideous Loathsome Couple, as You never really choose anything It s all presented to you, and then you have alternatives An enlightening discussion about the semi mysterious person known as Edward Ted Gorey, who created a disturbing montage of enticing images, and unsettling books, that have captured the attention of numerous admirers The explanatory excavation of various works, such as The Unstrung Harp, The Doubtful Guest, The Gashlycrumb Tinies, and all of the others, including the truly hideous Loathsome Couple, as well as the background events of his life, helped me grasp a better understanding of the world he inhabited I loved the last few chapters in particular, because they covered his later years, which I ve been curious about for some time All in all, it was a satisfying read flag 1 likeLike see review Jan 24, 2019 Shane rated it really liked it A real eye opener I d built my own mystique around this author based on his Gashlycrumb Tinies tales I have a mini lunchbox with his alphabet of doom thus, even though Dery understandably did not fully get inside his subject, he has crafted an admirable and engrossing portrait of an elusive and enigmatic artist flag 1 likeLike see review Nov 05, 2018 Lolly K Dandeneau rated it it was amazing via my blog Things impermanent, incomplete these were the sorts of things Gorey loved best I was excited to learn months ago that there would be a book coming out about Edward Gorey, the man whose genius inspired the likes of Tim Burton and Daniel Handler Lemony Snicket , among others including Anna Sui Ahead of his time, the too strange and eccentric nature of his creations later found a wider audience, certainly with my generation and those born af via my blog Things impermanent, incomplete these were the sorts of things Gorey loved best I was excited to learn months ago that there would be a book coming out about Edward Gorey, the man whose genius inspired the likes of Tim Burton and Daniel Handler Lemony Snicket , among others including Anna Sui Ahead of his time, the too strange and eccentric nature of his creations later found a wider audience, certainly with my generation and those born after Gorey is the father of it all, a man who found beauty in things withered as he took pleasure in that which is old, faded and lonely As to his sexuality, admittedly I am not interested in the speculation so much but can understand his hesitance during his time to claim homosexuality During his youth, it certainly wasn t a time embracing any peculiarities of arts nor any deviate from the so called norms He was flamboyant in his dress, certainly it all seemed to be theater but reading about the way he kept his home, when he finally allowed someone deeper access into it, not everything was about show , with his home ever changing almost as if a stage for his entertainmen, a show for one He seemed a man unto himself, someone who lived for his pleasures without the need to explain himself I always find it interesting when we try to explore the sexuality of others, that it still makes people uncomfortable if someone doesn t chose a label Maybe it s because I have family members who are attracted to people but aren t or weren t for those now deceased much interested in the complications of relationships, who chose to live their lives freely, to come and go as they pleased and put their time and attention into their passions, be it art, study work, travel As well as others who once were married and when it ended invested in themselves, didn t chose to have relationships later in life In fact, I see it all the time in neighbors, friends Not everyone wants someone in their life, at their side all the time and would rather visit with friends and then go home to the quiet of their beloved solitude Don t confuse being sometimes alone with chosing to live as a recluse Why is that so hard to accept There are people who don t really feel invested in their sexuality at all, who find their passions in other things beyond the body Certainly the gay imagery in some of Gorey s work fuels the whisperings that he was homosexual, as well as his own comments in interviews There was also the earlier crush In fact, Maurice Sendak himself gay met Edward Gorey and understood him, the need to hide his sexuality, as well as the struggle as an artist to be taken seriously, to become successful Whatever his sexual preference was, Gorey was a wildly creative, fascinating, private man Before he went to Harvard, his education was delayed by serving in the Army It s hard to associate the Edward we all know and love with the clean cut military picture of one Private Gorey, circa 1943.His childhood certainly doesn t seem as ordinary as he led people to believe as you will read about in the chapter entitled A Suspiciously Normal Childhood As the author asks, is it normal to be cutting your eyeteeth on Victorian Novels , learning to read at three What about a grandmother s madness Seems he had plenty of gothic drama to fuel his future work, within his own upbringing As this is a review, I won t go into , it s in Mark Derry s book, read it It seems current times would have been perfect for Gorey s talents, but maybe for someone enad of his privacy fame would have been too itchy a coat for the man Certainly I can imagine the shallow narcissism of our times would have been fodder for his work, even his later plays that seemed to become a bigger passion than releasing books for his fans We can all learn so much from the pleasure Edward Gorey revelled in while creating something for the sake of doing it simply because you enjoy it and not worrying so much about the reception In time, those naysayers will come around, which he learned years before with a certain magazine cover he landed after prior rejection There was a lot I didn t know about Gorey, and this book isn t so much about revealing deep dark secrets as it s a peek into the life of one heck of a peculiar artist, one whose macabre style was rich in texture, his shading with only a pen is incredible, his meticulousness evident with crosshatching He had a signature style, creepy little stories that an untold number of artists have mimicked, but will we ever know the man fully A man of biting wit, melodramatic about the smallest events and yet seemingly indifferent about the big stuff, lover of cats who he allowed free reign, even if it meant messing up work he spent hours on, contrary to his core, highly intelligent, a lover of the ballet, avid collector, a lover of things old, faded and lonely Can we ever know even ourselves For fans and people new to Edward Gorey, this is a wonderful read.Available Tomorrow November 6, 2018Little, Brown and Company flag 3 likesLike see review Dec 17, 2018 Kate marked it as to read Shelves biography memoir I realize that homosexuality is a serious problem for anyone who is but then, of course, heterosexuality is a serious problem for anyone who is, too, he said And being a man is a serious problem and being a woman is, too Lots of things are problems flag 1 likeLike see review Dec 20, 2018 Kate rated it it was amazing Shelves 2018 non fiction, 2018 reads There are many reasons to be fascinated by the life of Edward Gorey, a man who lived his life exactly as he chose In this book, Mark Dery illuminates as much as he can about Ted s childhood, his art, his writing, his relationships, while also being very clear about what he cannot tell Remarkably even handed yet also illuminating, this is a thorough and engaging biography of a brilliant oddball flag 1 likeLike see review Dec 11, 2018 Antonia Malvino rated it it was amazing Born to be Posthumous is a thorough account of Edward Gorey s formative influences The book delivers from its title to its contents a life account congruent with the works of the artist An impressive biography, one rich in mood and dark humor flag 1 likeLike see review Dec 09, 2018 Bill rated it it was amazing I had no interest in Edward Gorey before visiting his home on Cape Cod a few weeks ago My curiosity was picked so I read this book which take the life of a reclusive writer and make this interesting In addition the book is full of literary criticism Gorey s writings I cannot think of a better way to spend a late autumn afternoon or evening than reading this book flag 1 likeLike see review Nov 19, 2018 Christina Roberts rated it really liked it I started off an Edward Gorey fan I was hooked from the very start by the animation he did for the intro of Mystery This is a book full of interviews, the subjects, the content, and the personal details that make Edward Gorey so interesting flag 1 likeLike see review Sep 25, 2018 Autumn rated it liked it I didn t even know Frank O Hara and Edward Gorey were roommates, but this well researched book was fun for me as a novice Gorey fan He would have loved 2018 flag 1 likeLike see review Jan 22, 2019 Jackie rated it it was ok review of another edition Edward Gorey would not approve of this biographyTo be fair, it does not appear that Mr Gorey would approve of any biography I was so excited to read this book and to learn about the man behind those wonderful Victorian Edwardian drawings and funny macabre rhymes The author stated that he worked on this book for seven years, so it really pains me to say negative things about the product of that amount of research But it also really pained me to read it I ended up skimming large chunks Edward Gorey would not approve of this biographyTo be fair, it does not appear that Mr Gorey would approve of any biography I was so excited to read this book and to learn about the man behind those wonderful Victorian Edwardian drawings and funny macabre rhymes The author stated that he worked on this book for seven years, so it really pains me to say negative things about the product of that amount of research But it also really pained me to read it I ended up skimming large chunks Like many, my first introduction to Edward Gorey was his illustrations that opened and closed the Mystery series on PBS I was hooked immediately I did some research and eventually bought his book Amphigorey, which I love I was very interested to learn about him Unfortunately, Mr Gorey seemed to enjoy keeping people guessing Or he just did not want to be known This makes the work of a biographer very difficult I am always interested in people s early life and very little is available The biography did pick up in the second half as Mr Gorey became famous and there were people to interview about him One of my quibbles about this book is the length The author was trying to stretch a little into a lot Mr Gorey also had a lot of cultured and also obscure interests Mr Dery would go on for pages about things that were remotely connected to his subject These things or people were unfamiliar to me and really not that interesting It is like his editor told him he had to write 416 pages, so he padded his work with tangents like a high school student writing a 500 word essay The biography also veered off into the author s opinions and his attempts to analyze Mr Gorey and his work As other reviewers have noted, there was too much made of Mr Gorey s sexual orientation or lack of Mr Gorey apparently described himself as neutral so for heaven s sake, leave the poor man and his sex life alone Ditto the forays into Freudian interpretations of Mr Gorey s childhood and the impact on his adulthood and his work And I am a psychologist complaining about too much Freud This entire book reminded me of those long forwards for classic literature written by some professor who has made their life s work studying one author With the best intentions, I will start to read those and then my mind glazes over about three pages in Okay, sometimes two pages in If you are the type of reader who loves those forwards, then Born to Be Posthumous is the perfect book for you You are a better person than I I did learn some things about Mr Gorey and reading skimming this biography has made me want to revisit Amphigorey Some of the things that I learned will give me a new perspective on Mr Gorey s work I m sure I will see new things in the verse and illustrations That is also what I love about Mr Gorey s tiny books You can enjoy them on many levels and you will likely observe something new each time flag Like see review Jan 09, 2019 Jason Das rated it liked it Sigh what a squandered opportunity Well researched, dully conceived, poorly written I learned a lot about Edward Gorey for which I am quite grateful and I experienced a lot of how limited and tiresome Mark Dery is for which I am quite annoyed.An abridged version of this book just the history and contemporary criticism, please would be a joy Instead it s a slog, mired in Dery s overbearing neediness to act as the readers guide, interpreter, and self conciously witty friend On top Sigh what a squandered opportunity Well researched, dully conceived, poorly written I learned a lot about Edward Gorey for which I am quite grateful and I experienced a lot of how limited and tiresome Mark Dery is for which I am quite annoyed.An abridged version of this book just the history and contemporary criticism, please would be a joy Instead it s a slog, mired in Dery s overbearing neediness to act as the readers guide, interpreter, and self conciously witty friend On top of that, Dery is driven to categorize, define, look for hidden meaning, connect dots, Freudian analyze, speak authoratively about specialized topics he doesn t really understand, etc and show off his legwork for all of the above If only he d just get out of the way of the story it s a consistantly interesting one.I like that images are distributed where they ought to occur in the text rather than clumped in glossy inserts but there should be many, many Time and again, Dery will spend a paragraph describing an illustration or object in superficial detail when we would be much better off just seeing the thing I m sure the rights are expensive, but so is gumming up the book with all these extra words maybe just tell us where to find the pictures in other books That said, I did appreciate the descriptions of things we can t see as easily, such as theatrical works.For all the minutiae in some areas, I miss it in others Who paid for his theater company How did he travel between NYC and Cape Cod Why did Gorey think Philadelphia was closer to Pittsburgh than to NYC Who took care of his cats in New York when he went to Cape Cod Where did his cats come from What were their names Did he take them to the vet We do get a tiny bit of info about his cats, mostly those who survived him, but info on them seems like the most obvious hole in the book they seem to have been much important to Gorey than they are to Dery Some of the endnotes are good and important on such topics as David Bowie, the whiteness of Gorey s world and art, the origin of the Black Doll , so take some time to scan for the long ones.I recommend Joan Acocella s review in The New Yorker and Robert Gottlieb s review in the New York Times Book Review, both of which I read in the middle of slogging through this book They are both enjoyable reads featuring valuable infomation and insight about both Gorey s greatness and this book s shortcomings flag Like see review View all 5 comments Nov 30, 2018 Kevin rated it it was amazing It s hard to write a compelling biography when the subject spent decades obscuring the facts of his life, but cultural critic Mark Dery Flame Wars has prevailed Born to Be Posthumous is a fascinating biography and appreciation of Edward Gorey According to Dery, Gorey was a walking paradox whose life was as full of unsolved riddles and buried secrets as any good mystery The author illustrator, who wrote than 100 books, was a reclusive, cryptic and contradictory eccentric Although It s hard to write a compelling biography when the subject spent decades obscuring the facts of his life, but cultural critic Mark Dery Flame Wars has prevailed Born to Be Posthumous is a fascinating biography and appreciation of Edward Gorey According to Dery, Gorey was a walking paradox whose life was as full of unsolved riddles and buried secrets as any good mystery The author illustrator, who wrote than 100 books, was a reclusive, cryptic and contradictory eccentric Although born in Chicago, Gorey hid behind the persona of a mid century Victorian, wearing flamboyant full length fur coats and a long Edwardian beard He lived in a home with a half dozen cats and 20,000 books He was adroit at throwing sleuths off the scent, writes Dery.Even Gorey s closest friends felt that they never knew him intimately But, Dery uncovers the elusive Gorey by delving into the staggering number of books he wrote and illustrated His friend Maurice Sendak said, He buried a lot of information about himself in the art By examining Gorey s stylized gothic drawings, perverse subject matter and pitch black humor, Dery reveals the man who spent a lifetime hiding He published numerous books under a dozen pseudonyms anagrams, including Waredo Dyrge and Dogear Wryde While Gorey led a quiet and solitary life, his work was wildly outlandish and successful The fire and passion in Gorey s life was his art and his books Dery is a perfect, erudite guide to appreciating Gorey s talent and legacy, including influencing the works of Lemony Snicket, Gary Larson and Tim Burton Despite Edward Gorey s decades of biographical subterfuge, critic Mark Dery has written a fascinating and insightful appreciation of the author and illustrator flag Like see review Jan 10, 2019 Steven rated it really liked it I found this book absolutely enthralling, because I have always loved the work of Edward Gorey However, I have a few quibbles with the way Mark Dery has treated his subject First, it must be remembered that Gorey was definitely a niche talent and not one that can withstand the kind of elaborate scrutiny to which Dery subjects him We should enjoy Gorey for his quirky, eccentric, and off kilter humor and careful craftsmanship, but let s not make the man into a genius of the 20th century as t I found this book absolutely enthralling, because I have always loved the work of Edward Gorey However, I have a few quibbles with the way Mark Dery has treated his subject First, it must be remembered that Gorey was definitely a niche talent and not one that can withstand the kind of elaborate scrutiny to which Dery subjects him We should enjoy Gorey for his quirky, eccentric, and off kilter humor and careful craftsmanship, but let s not make the man into a genius of the 20th century as the title would have us believe Secondly, and most irritatingly, Dery goes on and on about Gorey s sexuality Was he gay Was he asexual Did he act on his impulses Is any of it really important I think in the final few pages of the book, Dery concludes that his speculations about Gorey s sexual impulses are really irrelevant, but good grief, it took him a long time to get there So yes, I would recommend this book, but only to those who already know Gorey s work and can put up with Dery s sometimes irritating obsessions Tellingly, the most interesting part of the book is the final third, when Gorey essentially did the work he had always wanted to do mounting weird theatrical events and got away from illustration And Dery does an excellent job of describing this period flag Like see review Jan 09, 2019 Jill Frederickson rated it liked it Great title I enjoyed what Dery unearthed about Gorey s working practices and the sequence of his publications Given his appreciation of surrealism, Tao, tea and puppetry I feel like Edward Gorey and I might have enjoyed dinner together I may have to investigate ballet, given his affinity there and the similarity to my taste on other fronts The oft repeated observance that no one really knew him makes sense to me because he was a whole, complex person with diverse joys and dislikes I rather Great title I enjoyed what Dery unearthed about Gorey s working practices and the sequence of his publications Given his appreciation of surrealism, Tao, tea and puppetry I feel like Edward Gorey and I might have enjoyed dinner together I may have to investigate ballet, given his affinity there and the similarity to my taste on other fronts The oft repeated observance that no one really knew him makes sense to me because he was a whole, complex person with diverse joys and dislikes I rather hope that I may be similar in presenting so many different beautiful facets to the world I found Dery s near constant push to prove that Edward Gorey was gay really tiresome Dery focused on Edward s sexuality than Edward His being gay or not seems incidental to his art Gorey s romantic life or lack thereof is made much of a focus than it seemed to be for the man living it It feels rude and disbelieving to keep returning to the question, but is he gay Especially When the person in question did not seem motivated to pursue or answer that question either publicly or privately when alive If the man says he is a neutral , let him be one It takes until the very end for Dery to say, isn t the right to define oneself a cornerstone of identity politics But he states that and then continues to dig into the sexual identity questions, annoying flag Like see review previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 next new topicDiscuss This Book There are no discussion topics on this book yet Be the first to start one Share Recommend It Stats Recent Status Updates Readers Also Enjoyed Mark is at work on a biography of the artist, writer, and legendary eccentric Edward Gorey for Little, Brown Books by Mark Dery More Trivia About Born to Be Posthu No trivia or quizzes yet Add some now Quotes from Born to Be Posthu I tend to think life is pastiche I m not sure what it s a pastiche of we haven t found out yet 0 likes His day to day life was fairly frivolous and lazy and laid back It was watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer with a bunch of cats hanging on his shoulders and maybe reading a book at the same time or doing a crossword puzzle 33 0 likes More quotes renderRatingGraph 59, 73, 44, 8, 3 if rating_details rating_detailssert top rating_graph Company About us Careers Terms Privacy Help Work with us Authors Advertise Authors ads blog API Connect 2019 , Inc Mobile version

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    One thought on “Born to Be Posthumous: The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gorey”

    1. 3.5 stars But did anyone really know him Did he even want to be known. Edward Gorey is famously infamous Being nil, Gorey decided, was the safest policy. His work provided the scaffolding and inspiration for Neil Gaiman s Coraline, for Tim Burton s creeptacular movies, for Lemony Snicket s Series of Unfortunate Events and so much .And yet, surprisingly little is known about him He wrote many delightfully macabre books, which alternately impressed and horrified publishers There [...]

    2. Only now are art critics, scholars of children s literature, historians of book cover design and commercial illustration, and chroniclers of the gay experience in postwar America waking up to the fact that Gorey is a critically neglected genius His consummately original vision expressed in virtuosic illustrations and poetic texts but articulated with equal verve in book jacket design, verse plays, puppet shows, and costumes and sets for ballets and Broadway productions has earned him a place Onl [...]

    3. Born to Be Posthumous The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gorey by Mark Deryis a book I requested and the review is voluntary.I didn t even know who Edward Gorey was when I started this book, is that bad Well I sure do now I love how this book is written It is full of character and is very colorful just like the subject Each chapter heading is unique, and the interviews, the subjects, the content, and the personal details are totally remarkably I started out knowing nothing Born t [...]

    4. I m less than thrilled with the idea of readers receiving a book from a publisher in exchange for a review I m unsure why that is permitted at all, but at least it is noted when it occurs.I found this book neither good nor bad Does it capture Gorey s unique genius No Does it focus too much on his sexuality Yes.Meh Stick to Gorey himself.

    5. So, are we just all gonna ignore the fact that Dery posthumously outed Gorey Page 136 If such articles are to be believed, then Gorey wasn t necessarily gay, even though he was a lifelong bachelor who dressed in necklaces and furs.he was just asexual, a kind of lovable eunich Page 138 Gorey kept perfectly mum about his true nature to the press he only spoke about it in his art And in a way, to be honest, the glass closet was appropriate to his artistic persona, which was neither her So, are we j [...]

    6. It illuminates without washing out the wonder of the works or the man himself A worthwhile read, like discovering Gorey s unique world again.

    7. BORN TO BE POSTHUMOUS 2018 Mark Dery .This is an excellent study appreciation of Edward Gorey The full title runs on The Eccentric Life and Mysterious Genius of Edward Gory I didn t know much about Gorey before reading this book, but that has changed it all Gorey has a big following I can recognize his work, but I am not a collector The only short coming of this book was its paucity of its illustrations Although there were many reproductions of his work, there were too few He BORN TO BE POSTHUMO [...]

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