Books: Life with a Famous Dad

Martin Amis assesses the ups and downs of his famous literary pedigree

Martin Amis went through a bad patch during the mid-'90s, much of it eagerly, indeed cheerfully, recounted in the British press. He left his wife of almost 10 years and his two sons to take up with an American woman. Dissatisfied with the negotiations for the rights to his eighth novel, The Information, he dumped his agent, Pat Kavanagh, thereby infuriating her husband, the author Julian Barnes, who was until that moment one of Amis' closest friends. Amis underwent a long bout of dental reconstruction, prompting reporters to observe, in print, that he was not only a failed husband and father...

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