Must You Go?

My Life with Harold Pinter

Publisher: Anchor Canada
A moving testament to one of the literary world's most celebrated marriages: that of the greatest playwright of our age, Harold Pinter, and the beautiful and famous prize-winning biographer Antonia Fraser. 

In this exquisite memoir, Antonia Fraser recounts the life she shared with the internationally renowned dramatist. In essence, it is a love story and a marvelously insightful account of their years together, beginning with their initial meeting when Fraser was the wife of a member of Parliament and mother of six, and Pinter was married to a distinguished actress. Over the years, they experienced much joy, a shared devotion to their work, crises and laughter, and, in the end, great courage and love as Pinter battled the illness to which he eventually suc­cumbed on Christmas Eve 2008. 

Must You Go? is based on Fraser’s recollections and on the diaries she has kept since October 1968. She shares Pinter’s own revelations about his past, as well as observations by his friends. Fraser’s diaries—written by a biographer living with a creative artist and observing the process firsthand—also pro­vide a unique insight into his writing. 

Harold Pinter and Antonia Fraser lived together from August 1975 until his death thirty-three years later. “O! call back yesterday, bid time return,” cries one of the courtiers to Richard II. This is Antonia Fraser’s uniquely compelling way of doing so.

READ AN EXCERPT

Chapter One
 
First Night

 
 
I first saw Harold across a crowded room, but it was lunchtime, not some enchanted evening, and we did not speak. I was having lunch in the Etoile restaurant in Charlotte Street; my companion pointed to a trio of men lunching opposite us. They were...
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PRAISE FOR

“Glowing.... There’s hardly a dull page.”  The New York Times

"Entertaining and ultimately touching in its determination to recapture lost time, to portray a younger, more carefree self and to bring back a lost loved one, if only on the page." The New York Times Book Review

"A stirring celebration of what Fraser, reflecting near the end of Pinter's life, observed as a union 'to the infinite degree happy beyond all possible expectations.'" The New Yorker

"Moving and compellingly readable.... Written with palpable love, warmth, affection and a huge sense of loss... A heart-warming love story." The Telegraph

"Few people have the emotional capacity for a grand passion, or the talent for expressing it, as she does. Lady Antonia is a narrative historian and she has spent the year since Pinter died writing out their love story." The Daily Mail