He wrote the finest ever book on cricket. But he was also a man of remarkably versatile talents and personalities. Dave Renton pries open the life of Cyril Lionel Robert James and what is revealed is a kaleidoscopic variety of accomplishments.

A Trotskyite, a Marxist for life, intellectual, magnificent orator, statesman, a fervent advocate of African and Black rights, philosopher, author and cricket fanatic, James represents one of the most influential characters defining some of the most landmark events illumining the modern milieu.

Dave Renton does ample justice to a highly distinguished career in this condensed but carefully crafted book. James’s dalliances with feminist intellects, his alliance and break-ups with Trotsky, Nkrumah and Eric Williams, his nurturing friendship with the West Indian cricketing stalwarts such as Learie Constantine, and Frank Worrell, his incarceration in the United States for being an avowed communist all make for some stirring reading.

C L R James thoughts belong with equal relevance to the past, present and future!

C. L. R. James: cricket’s philosopher king by David Renton

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