Bate, Jonathan. John Clare: A Biography. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2003. Scholarly biography of the writer.
Blythe, Ronald. Talking About John Clare. Nottingham, England: Trent, 1999. A commentary on the relationship between the English rural writer and the places that inform his work. Includes passages on many writers who are thematically associated with Clare.
Chilcott, Tim. “A Real World and Doubting Mind”: A Critical Study of the Poetry of John Clare. Hull, England: Hull University Press, 1985. The title of this volume is taken from Clare’s The Shepherd’s Calendar. Chilcott argues that the “real world” and the “doubting mind” are two distinct aspects of Clare’s poetry. Discusses the periods before and during his asylum stay. A challenging critical study recommended for readers familiar with Clare.
Chirico, Paul. John Clare and the Imagination of the Reader. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007. This work examines Clare’s poetry, his early periodical publications, and scholarly studies by others about his writing. Also examined are his role in the literary world and his relationship with his publishers.
Clay, Arnold. Itching After Rhyme: A Life of John Clare. Tunbridge Wells, England: Parapress, 2000. A detailed biography with bibliographical references and index.
Houghton-Walker, Sarah. John Clare’s Religion. Burlington, Vt.: Ashgate, 2009. Discusses the religious aspect presented in Clare’s poetry in the context of pastoral poetry.
Storey, Edward. A Right to Song: The Life of John Clare. London: Methuen, 1982. A full-length biography sympathetic to Clare that looks at the complexity of his poetic landscapes. The thoroughly researched biography stays close to his works and is recommended for Clare scholars.
Storey, Mark. The Poetry of John Clare: A Critical Introduction. London: Macmillan, 1974. Explicitly an introduction, this volume traces the development of Clare’s poetry from his humble beginnings to his maturation. Chooses The Shepherd’s Calendar as the focal point for an examination of Clare’s mature descriptive technique. An appreciative study of Clare that highlights both the appeal and the variety of his work.
Vardy, Alan D. John Clare: Politics and Poetry. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003. This profile examines the political and philosophical views of the poet and further investigates the role of his editor, John Taylor.