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The Strings are False is Louis MacNeice's unfinished autobiography. Written when MacNeice was a young man it was only discovered and published after his death in 1963. Described by Geoffrey Grigson in the Guardian as 'the best thing Louis MacNeice ever wrote in prose', The Strings are False is being reissued in MacNeice's centenary year with a new preface by Derek Mahon.
Louis MacNeice was born in Belfast in 1907, the son of a Church of Ireland rector, later a bishop. He was educated in England at Sherborne, Marlborough and Merton College, Oxford. His first book of poems, Blind Fireworks, appeared in 1929, and he subsequently worked as a translator, literary critic, playwright, autobiographer, BBC producer and feature writer. The Burning Perch, his last volume of poems, appeared shortly before his death in 1965.