The great art critic is going through a bad time with regard to his health as he’s suffering from a diabolical cancer that he is fighting with his usual tenacity and, hopefully, he will send it packing with the help of the Almighty and the moral support of his many admirers.
As his publisher, I would like to remind people that his two volumes of autobiography, which Quartet published two years ago, are still available and invariably receive the kind of attention that they truly deserve.
His turn of phrase, for which he’s noted, and his audacious honesty are the ingredients that make him uniquely readable. The faint-hearted might baulk at his capacity to shock but that’s the strength and conviction of both his style and view of the world.
Independent of mind and fearless, he has remained throughout his life unperturbed by any adverse reaction that he sometimes generates. Yet there is another side to him that has a certain tenderness which clearly manifests itself when his love of animals becomes a vocation and almost a raison d’être.
His book, Sleeping with Dogs, published last year, is a glaring testimony of that unshakeable love. It is a proximity hard to explain but apparently had its roots in a passionate affection for the dog in his early childhood, and lasting undiminished into his dotage.
Brian is the sort who grows on you as you begin to know him better. His talent in many a sphere is bottomless and he has the rare capacity to surprise you when you least expect it.
He is, in brief, a man for all seasons whose immortality is assured.