Zachary Leader is Professor of English Literature at Roehampton University in Great Britain, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He was educated at Northwestern, Cambridge, and Harvard universities, and is the author of Reading Blake’s Songs, Writer’s Block, Revision and Romantic Authorship, and The Life of Kingsley Amis, a finalist for the 2008 Pulitzer Prize. The Life of Saul Bellow: Love and Strife, 1965-2005 (Vol. 2) (Knopf) is his most recent book. When this second volume of The Life of Saul Bellow opens, Bellow, at forty-nine, is at the pinnacle of American letters – rich, famous, critically acclaimed. The expected trajectory is one of decline: volume 1, rise; volume 2, fall. Bellow never fell, producing some of his greatest fiction (Mr Sammler’s Planet, Humboldt’s Gift, all his best stories), winning two more National Book Awards, a Pulitzer Prize, and the Nobel Prize. At eighty, he wrote his last story; at eighty-five, he wrote Ravelstein. In this volume, his life away from the desk, including his love life, is if anything more dramatic than in volume 1. Bellow’s heroic energy and will are clear to the very end of his life. His immense achievement and its cost, to himself and others, are also clear.