Isaac Asimov by Michael White

Oct 10, 20:31 by IROSF
Thread for the discussion of Isaac Asimov or Michael White's bio of Isaac, or even Greg Beatty's review of the bio.

The article is here.
Oct 11, 11:35 by David Bratman
Beatty says that White documents "two or three fairly open secrets" about Asimov, then says that the secrets are "threefold," but I count only two in his description of what they are.

I presume the author is the same Michael White who published a biography of Tolkien a few years ago. That was a book so bad one could only laugh at it: hideously clumsy writing, hilariously erroneous facts, sub-freshman-level armchair psychoanalysis. If this is the same person, I would approach any further work by him with extreme caution.
Oct 11, 12:42 by Bluejack
I read the three secrets as being (1) public lechery, (2) private lechery, (3) aids. All of which are so "open" as to be common knowledge, at this point.
Oct 11, 23:20 by David Bratman
Asimov's public lechery was never a secret, not even an open one. It was a schtick.
Oct 12, 02:57 by jack skillingstead
I'm all in favor of lechery, whether it be private or public. Keeps the juices flowing.
Oct 12, 18:43 by Fred Kiesche
The reviewer overlooks three additional sources of autobiographical information on Asimov--two additional autobiography volumes (one released after his death) and a volume of letters.

Oveall, it does not seem like any new ground has been broken here. In fact, it sounds like an issue of a tabloid. Thanks, I'll pass.
Oct 12, 18:50 by Fred Kiesche
"If true, this is sad—and reinforces White’s explicit statements elsewhere in the book about how important money was to Asimov."

From the Asimov site:

The book also includes an epilogue in which Janet Jeppson Asimov reveals for the first time that Isaac's 1992 death from heart and kidney failure was a consequence of AIDS contracted from a transfusion of tainted blood during his December 1983 triple-bypass operation. She explains how and when he learned he had the disease, and why his doctors convinced him to keep it a secret from the public. The epilogue includes a description of Asimov's final days, together with some poignant passages that describe his views of life and death.

[There have been some erroneous published reports stating that it was Janet Asimov who convinced her husband to keep the fact that he had contracted AIDS a secret. This is absolutely untrue. In fact it was Asimov's doctors who urged that the matter be kept a secret. See Janet's April 4, 2002 letter to Locus magazine.]

Sounds like the author is angling for controversy, in the hopes of jacking up sales. No sale here, thanks.
Jan 3, 21:35 by James Frenkel
Greg Beatty mentions Asimov's two long volumes of autobiography. What about the third, I, Asimov, published much later than the first two, and billed as being a much more honest book certain ways.
   

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