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A moving memoir that shakes the dust off Horace - and restores him to his rightful berth among the immortals (Harry Mount, author of Amo, Amas, Amat...)
One of the very best kinds of "How to" books ... Anyone holidaying this year in the old classical Mediterranean should take Horace and Me with them, along with a good copy of Horace's own poetry (Christopher Hart, Literary Review, Summer Reads)
An appealing guide to life, ancient and modern ... Eyres has a taste for Horace's wine as well as an ear for the vigorous Latin with which it is evoked. In Horace and Me, he blends these with memoir to create a paean to Horace and a polemic for the wise life, and for classical literature in general ... He makes Horace very appealing: a paunchy, sociable man ... Eyres's take on Horace is enlightening, and best of all he provides his own witty, exuberantly updated translations of the verses ... Keeps Horace surprising and fresh. It sends the reader to the original - not for a more conventional translation but for a long sip of the Latin, which Eyres makes clear we cannot do without whether we can spout it magnificently on a Cretan mountain or not (Sarah Bakewell, Financial Times)
Delightful ... Its seductive interweaving of a modern life and an ancient one will encourage a wider readership of this most appealing of Latin writers, even if only in translation (Economist)
As a man of letters, learning and light-heartedness, Harry Eyres is rather a rarity these days (The Times)
Rich ... Eyres the fogey and Eyres the rebel combine to find in the greatest lyric poet of the ancient world someone who tells us afresh about the way we live - about what is enough and what is too much, about friendship and power, about how to deal with the march of time and the ironies of love (Daily Telegraph)
Harry Eyres, with the help of the poetry of Horace, has written a book about some of the essential questions. He has squeezed from the life of the poet and from poems two thousand years old lessons that are fresh and relevant today. Horace and Me is a book about the love of poetry and its practical value in these troubling times. A delightful, thought-provoking book into which a lifetime of reading and musing has casually strolled (Ben Okri, Booker Prize-winning author of The Famished Road)
Mr. Eyres writes with insight about why Horace first left him cold, then with intense feeling about all he has gained from the odes in recent years ... Such gem-like appreciations of the intimate, the local and the natural show Mr. Eyres the path toward his goal of "being a human being, in the fullest sense" .... They will no doubt enjoy the cool drinks that Mr. Eyres scoops up from that rustic Bandusian spring (Wall Street Journal Europe)
Why has no one done this before? - explored themselves through their reading of a great voice from the past? What Horace wrote (about love, about wine, about happiness) can have revelatory relevance. Harry Eyres puts his lyrics in a contemporary and personal context, where he sounds fresher and more to the point than ever (Hugh Johnson)
Horace and Me is a little like Withnail & I for toffs, not thesps ... Dotty hymn of praise ... Emotive (Observer)
Horace lived at a pivotal moment. Rome was facing a profound crisis: though it ruled the world, the values which had made it great were disintegrating. As efficiency and pragmatism became watchwords, Horace championed the 'supremely useless' endeavour of poetry, and glorified friendship and wine. Horace and Me charts Harry Eyres' evolving relationship with the Latin poet to show how, in an era of affluence and excess which seems to be hurtling out of control, Horace can help us navigate our way in uncertain times.
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