Grevel Lindop

Poet, biographer, critic, essayist and writer on just about everything

Opium Eater E-Book

The Opium Eater: ready to order now

Delighted to say that I’ve just brought out my first e-book! The Opium-Eater, my biography of Thomas De Quincey, the great Romantic essayist and author of Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, is now out from Crux Publishing, an independent publisher specialising in high quality non-fiction e-books. It’s been well-recived, as you can see from the reviews on and, which are all 5*.

Thomas De Quincey (1785-1859) is world-famous for his Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, the first book to explore the experience of addiction and the states of mind – both alienated and visionary – to which it gave rise.

The archetypal bohemian, at seventeen De Quincey was living penniless on the streets of London. Later, as a pioneering journalist, he spent a wandering life of poverty and debt whilst writing for the great magazines which were the mass media of his day.

A close friend of Wordsworth and Coleridge, he shared the lives of the Romantic poets in the Lake District and wrote vivid personal accounts of them which caused a storm of controversy.

Recognised as a genius by authors as diverse as Virginia Woolf and William Burroughs, De Quincey analysed the alienation of the city, the aesthetics of murder, and the paradoxical nature of the self at the very dawn of the modern age. He is a founder of modern biography, a subversive thinker, an innovative crime writer and above all a master of English prose.

I’ve been able to incorportate in my biography of this remarkable figure, all the new discoveries that where made when I was General Editor of De Quincey’s collected works. My book traces him from the affluent Manchester childhood which he fled for poverty and the streets, then through addiction, literary success, and the dramatic tensions of his later debt-ridden years in Edinburgh when he produced his last masterpieces. The book has been fully revised and updated for this new edition.

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