Books: Greene Lite

Discovering all about a writer except who he was

"He is very agreeable," wrote a baroness in Belgium, introducing Graham Greene to a doctor running a leper colony in the Congo, but "very problematic." Indeed so. The love of ambiguity and restless sense of privacy that made Greene one of the defining writers of the past century rendered him a mystery in life, even to himself. Fifteen or so years before his death, perhaps as one of his celebrated pranks, the aging novelist appointed an intrepid Joseph Conrad scholar, Norman Sherry, to be his official biographer. In the 28 years since his appointment, Sherry followed Greene to more than 20 countries, got dysentery...