RT Book, Whole DB /z-wcorg/ DS http://worldcat.org ID 52948859 LA English T1 Dangerous intimacy : the untold story of Mark Twain's final years A1 Lystra, Karen., PB University of California Press PP Berkeley YR 2004 SN 0520233239 9780520233232 9780520250000 0520250001 AB "Dangerous Intimacy tells the story of how, shortly after his wife's death in 1904, Twain enjoyed the attentions of Isabel Lyon, his flirtatious - and calculating - secretary. Lyon desperately wanted to marry her boss, who was almost thirty years her senior. She manipulated the household into exiling Jean, Twain's youngest daughter and an epileptic, to a sanitarium. With the help of Twain's assistant, Ralph Ashcroft, who fraudulently acquired power of attorney over the author's finances, Lyon nearly succeeded in assuming complete control over Twain's household and estate. Fortunately, Twain recognized the plot being woven around him in the nick of time. So rife with twists and turns as to defy belief, the story comes to life via the letters and diaries of the participants: Katy the housekeeper, Jean, Lyon, and others whose distinctive, perceptive, often amusing voices take us straight into the heart of the Clemens household." "Just as Twain extricated himself from the lies, prejudice, and self-delusion that almost turned him into an American Lear, so Karen Lystra liberates the author's last decade of life from a century of popular misunderstanding. In this gripping book we at last see how, late in life, this American icon discovered a deep kinship with his youngest child and experienced the interplay of love and pain that is one of the hallmarks of his work."--Jacket.