Rarely has a book so divided reviewers. Historical biographer Lady Antonia Fraser’s diary of life with the legendary Nobel Prize-winning writer, actor, director and campaigner Harold Pinter is either praised as an uplifting, tender love story or denounced as the self-satisfied ramblings of one half of the couple who helped invent champagne socialism in the 1970s.

Engrossed, I favoured the former opinion at first, flirted with the less flattering view in the middle, when bored by yet another tediously ‘brilliant’ Pinter poem or lengthy name drop, before reverting back to being moved and admiring as Antonia described the Great Fear, with which anyone living with someone who is seriously ill will relate.

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