Patrick O’Brian, one of our greatest contemporary novelists, is the author of the acclaimed Aubrey–Maturin tales and the biographer of Joseph Banks and Picasso. His first novel, ‘Testimonies’, and his ‘Collected Short Stories’ have recently been republished by HarperCollins. He has translated many works from French into English, among them the novels and memoirs of Simone de Beauvoir and the first volume of Jean Lacouture’s biography of Charles de Gaulle. In 1995 he was the first recipient of the Heywood Hill Prize for a lifetime’s contribution to literature. In the same year he was also awarded the CBE. In 1997 he was given an honorary doctorate of letters by Trinity College, Dublin. Patrick O’Brian lived for many years in south west France, and died in Dublin in January 2000.
Patrick O’Brian is best known for the Aubrey–Maturin series, acclaimed by Richard Snow in ‘The New York Times’ as ‘the best historical novels ever written’.
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