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  • Published: 15 November 2017
  • ISBN: 9780241297698
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 400
  • RRP: $19.99

The Journal of a Disappointed Man




A funny, inspiring and heart-breaking diary that charts an energetic naturalist's battle with a degenerative disease.

'Yes, I am dead. I killed myself off at the end of my book, because it was high time'

The young naturalist W. N. P. Barbellion described this remarkably candid record of living with multiple sclerosis as 'a study in the nude'. It begins as an ambitious teenager's notes on the natural world, and then, following his diagnosis at the age of twenty-six, transforms into a deeply moving account of battling the disease. His prose is full of humour and fierce intelligence, and combines a passion for life with clear-sighted reflections on the nature of death.

Barbellion selected and edited this manuscript himself in 1917, adding a fictional editor's note announcing his own demise. This Penguin Classics edition includes 'The Last Diary', which covers the period between submission of the manuscript and Barbellion's actual death in 1919.

  • Published: 15 November 2017
  • ISBN: 9780241297698
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 400
  • RRP: $19.99

Praise for The Journal of a Disappointed Man

Among the most moving diaries ever created

Ronald Blythe

If I had a friend who found life tedious, who was maybe even suicidal, and I had the power to make him or her read one book, it would be the soul-stirring diary of Wilhelm Nero Pilate Barbellion

Noel Perrin

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