Doherty chronicles rise to fame with book deal

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No one would doubt that the private life of Pete Doherty is colouful. Now his diaries, chronicling "funny and dark" thoughts from 1999 to the present day, are to be published to prove it.

The 20 volumes of poems, drawings, film reviews and lyrics will be condensed into one hard-back volume, and published in March 2007. Naturally, despite being scheduled to make the announcement of their publication himself, Doherty failed to turn up yesterday to deliver what was billed as an "important career announcement".

In his absence, Ian Preece, commissioning editor of Orion Publishing Group, said: "From the early books a fascinating and very entertaining picture emerges of the young poet, broke in London, serving popcorn at the Prince Charles Cinema, dreaming of creating a band infused with the 'spirit of Albion'."

The diaries, which also make reference to his relationship with model Kate Moss, which ended last year, are: "Intimate, honest, very readable and very funny in places; pretty dark in others," Mr Preece said. The later pieces reflect "Pete's rise to fame, his changing world".

In a statement yesterday, Doherty said that publishing his thoughts was "exciting to me personally" as he had "always wanted to have a book published". Before achieving fame as a musician, Doherty visited Russia on a British Council tour after winning a poetry competition as a teenager, and started a degree in English literature before dropping out one year into the course. The 27-year-old singer, whose battle to overcome heroin addiction has led to numerous appearances in court, checked into an addiction clinic in Portugal at the beginning of the month. But in Sweden last week he was fined 14,000 kronor (£1,030) after police found traces of cocaine in his blood following his concert at the Hultsfred music festival.

Last year, he spent a week in the American rehabilitation clinic The Meadows, weeks after Moss spent a month in the same clinic following pictures of her allegedly taking cocaine appearing in the Daily Mirror.

Doherty gained a cult following in 2002 along with Carl Barat as the creative forces behind The Libertines. But he was kicked out of the band before their second album came out in August 2004. He went on to form Babyshambles, whose album Down in Albion was released in November 2005.

Despite his regular non-appearances at gigs, his lyrics and energy when on stage have gained him a loyal following - with a devoted fanbase regularly filling the public galleries during his court cases.