Author(s): Peter Stothard
A year after the death of Margaret Thatcher, a young woman arrives to ask Peter Stothard, former Editor of The Times, some sharp questions about his memories of the Thatcher era. During her interview the offices from where he long observed British politics are being flattened by wrecking balls. Forgotten stories return. From the destruction of a collapsing newspaper plant emerge portraits of the Senecans, a Hollywood screen-writer who wrote her speeches, a socialite former socialist who comforted her with flattery, a comic political columnist whom she admired but rarely read and a multi-millionaire film-producer whom she consulted but never acknowledged.The Senecans took their name from their taste for the work of Lucius Annaeus Seneca, a philosopher, courtier and acquirer of massive wealth from the age of the Emperor Nero. Blending memoir with ancient and modern politics in the manner of his acclaimed diaries, On the Spartacus Road and Alexandria, Stothard sheds a sideways light on recent history. In finally identifying his Interviewer he answers questions about his own literary and political journey.
'Margaret Thatcher and Emperor Nero, two courts across two thousand years. A brilliant, haunting work from a modern master of memoir.' Mary Beard
Peter Stothard was Editor of The Times from 1992 to 2002, the period of its greatest commercial success for a century, and before retiring recently was the Editor of the Times Literary Supplement. He was knighted for his services to newspapers in 2003. He has written extensively on politics and literature.