Professor Marion Turner’s book Chaucer: A European Life (Princeton University Press), has been named as one of the Books of the Year by contributors to the New Statesman.

The book, published in 2019, is a major new biography of the great poet and author, and the first in a generation.  Marion is Associate Professor and Tutorial Fellow in English at Jesus College.

Eminent author Simon Winder, said,

Marion Turner’s Chaucer: A European Life is a masterpiece. Each chapter pursues a specific theme (how mobile noble households worked, the wool staple and its travails, the opening decades of the Hundred Years’ War, the Black Death) and shows Chaucer entangled in it, pursuing his mercantile, military, ambassadorial, familial and poetic business.

He added,

“Turner delights in Chaucer’s poetry. She brilliantly fillets some lines I had never heard before.

This is not the first accolade for Marion’s book. The Times Literary Supplement picked it as one of their 2019 books of the year. "The book was so richly enjoyable that, once I had finished, I started to read all over again. It is an absolute triumph," wrote A.N. Wilson.

The Times also chose Chaucer: A European Life as one of its ten best books of 2019, in literary non-fiction, and The Sunday Times chose it as one of the best literary books of the year. Reviews have described Professor Turner's book as 'hugely illuminating,' (Telegraph), 'wholly beguiling,' (Evening Standard), 'magnificently scholarly' (The Spectator), 'a new kind of biography' (Times Higher) and 'of a rare ambition and competence' (First Things). 

Read the full list of the New Statesman Books of the Year 2020 here.