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The Washington Post…[a] warts-and-all account of the writer's life and character. Hitherto best known for his biographies of Malcolm Lowry and Lawrence Durrell, Bowker writes clearly and forcefully, acknowledges the work of earlier scholars and critics, and generally shies away from any extended analysis of the literary works themselves. His focus, then, is almost strictly on Joyce the human being…well worth reading, even if Joyce comes across as brilliant but exploitative, admirable as an artist but often mortifying as a man. It's not always a pretty picture, but it seems like a true one.