A collection of essays on the art of biography, this book, by one of our best known and loved biographers, is divided into two parts, the first, confessions, dealing with the generalities of biography, the second, restorations, showcasing a series of vignettes of folk of the Romantic era, a period for which this author is best known. The latter section is particularly good, focusing often on how biographies change over time according to the social atmosphere of the period. Mary Wollstonecraft, Shelley and Coleridge are especially interesting. I was less interested in Keats and Blake. A good read overall though, in polished prose and with plenty of insight.