The Black Count, By Tom Reiss
Boyd Tonkin is Literary Editor at The Independent. An award-winning journalist, he was formerly Social Policy Editor of the New Statesman and has broadcast extensively for BBC arts and current affairs programmes. He has judged the Booker Prize, the Whitbread biography award, the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the David Cohen Prize for a lifetime's achievement in literature.
Friday 31 May 2013
Alex Dumas, the mixed-race son of French aristocrat and his slave-born mistress, was born on Saint-Domingue (now Haiti) in 1762.
The charismatic hero of French revolutionary armies, he had the bad luck to fall out with a scheming runt called Bonaparte.
Napoleon did his utmost to scupper his rival. General Alex had good fortune too: first, to father one of the world's most popular novelists, the second Alexandre, who idolised his dad; and now, in Reiss, to find a biographer with the dash and flair both Dumases would cheer.
Artists unveils new exhibition inspired by Hastings beachart
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 I was a Woman Against Feminism too
- 2 Fifty Shades of Grey movie trailer released: First look at Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey
- 3 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 4 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 5 The Tory donor whose firm is one of Britain’s biggest tax avoiders - with HMRC's blessing
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia