15 December 2010

A Gentleman of Pleasure

Just announced by McGill-Queen's University Press:

A Gentleman of Pleasure: One Life of John Glassco, Poet,
Memoirist, Translator, and Pornographer

Brian Busby

April 2011

The first biography of Canada's most enigmatic literary figure, a self-described "great practitioner of deceit."

John Glassco (1909-1981) holds a unique position in Canadian letters and a somewhat notorious reputation throughout the world. He is best known for his Memoirs of Montparnasse, the controversial chronicle of his youthful adventures and encounters with celebrities in the Paris of James Joyce, Gertrude Stein, and Ernest Hemingway. Less known are his poetry, his instrumental role in the foundation of modern translation, and his numerous - and widely popular - works of pornography.

A Gentleman of Pleasure not only spans Glassco's life but delves into his background as a member of a once prominent and powerful Montreal family. In addition to Glassco's readily available work, Brian Busby draws on pseudonymous writings published as a McGill student as well as unpublished and previously unknown poems, letters, and journal entries to detail a vibrant life while pulling back the curtain on Glassco's sexuality and unconventional tastes.

In a lively account of a man given to deception, who took delight in hoaxes, Busby manages to substantiate many of the often unreliable statements Glassco made about his life and work. A Gentleman of Pleasure is a remarkable biography that captures the knowable truth about a fascinatingly complex and secretive man.

More, including pre-ordering information, can be found here.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention that the cover is by the talented David Drummond.


  1. Christopher Moore21 December, 2010 10:03

    Congratulations, Brian

  2. Thank you, Chris. The journey has been long... but well worth it.