Blake by Peter Ackroyd
Once a Blake fan, always a Blake fan…
This biography by Peter Ackroyd is very detailed and gives the reader a thorough insight of William Blake’s life from early childhood, family relations, his time when trying to develop his talent for painting and then later on life about his marriage and the start of him writing poetry.
The book is extremely well-written, filled with details and sensuous descriptions about London, where Blake used to live. We get exact descriptions of different places and streets in London, where he used to be and one who has been in London (or lived there, for that matter) feels closer to the great artist, even though we didn’t know that much about him – at least, I didn’t.
To me, his historical past and biography never seemed to matter, because it was (and still is!) all about his poetry and his amazing writing technique.
The idea of life and death become simple and suddenly not that scary, as Blake sets his focus on the afterlife in many of his poems.
If you are a Blake-fan, you should definitely read this! It is very obvious that Peter Ackroyd has done a beautiful job with researching historical facts about Blake’s life and while reading, you realize that he was not this great godlike figure – he was an artist who dreamed of giving the world something creative and new.