Muriel Spark Books & Bio. Cheap Books by Muriel Spark. Book People

Books by Muriel Spark

  • AADVG
    (1)
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    Lise has been driven to distraction by working in the same accountants' office for sixteen years. So she leaves everything behind her, transforms herself into a laughing, garishly-dressed temptress and flies abroad on the holiday of a lifetime. But her search for adventure, sex and the obsessional experience takes on a far darker significance as she heads on a journey of self-destruction. Infinity and eternity attend Lise's last terrible day in an unnamed southern city, as she meets her fate.
  • AGUDG
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    This is beautifully packaged reissue of one of Muriel Spark's best loved novels, "The Girls of Slender Means". 'Long ago in 1945 all the nice people in England were poor, allowing for exceptions'. In the May of Teck Club - a London hostel 'three times window shattered since 1940 but never directly hit' - the young lady residents do their best to act as if the war never happened. They practice elocution, and jostle one another over suitors and a single Schiaparelli gown. But behind the girls' giddy literary and amorous peregrinations they hide some tragically painful secrets and wounds. 'You girls are my vocation...I am dedicated to you in my prime'. "Reading the novel as a young woman was a random gift; rereading it today is to encounter the rarest of fiction and to appreciate the early and enduring genius of Muriel Spark". (Carol Shields, "Guardian"). "One of Spark's most evocative novels". (Anne Taylor). Muriel Spark was born and educated in Edinburgh. She was active in the field of creative writing since 1950, when she won a short-story writing competition in the "Observer", and her many subsequent novels include "Memento Mori" (1959), "The Ballad of Peckham Rye" (1960), "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie" (1961), "The Girls of Slender Means" (1963) and "Aiding and Abetting" (2000). She also wrote plays, poems, children's books and biographies. She became Dame Commander of the British Empire in 1993, and died in 2006.
  • AEBQS
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    'Give me a girl at an impressionable age, and she is mine for life...' Passionate, free-thinking and unconventional, Miss Brodie is a teacher who exerts a powerful influence over her group of 'special girls' at Marcia Blaine School. They are the Brodie set, the creme de la creme, each famous for something - Monica for mathematics, Eunice for swimming, Rose for sex - who are initiated into a world of adult games and extracurricular activities they will never forget. But the price they pay is their undivided loyalty...
  • BKWNM
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    Described by David Lodge as `her first masterpiece', Memento Mori opens with a telephone call and the words `Remember you must die'. Over several months, a circle of elderly men and women receive similar calls and everyone becomes a suspect. As the investigating police inspector muses: `Death, when it approaches, ought not to take one by surprise. It should be part of the full expectancy of life. Without an ever-present sense of death, life is insipid. You might as well live on the whites of eggs.' While immersed in the indignities of old age, dementia and death, this novel is both profoundly compassionate and entertaining. The publishers acknowledge investment from Creative Scotland towards the publication of this book. Supported by the Muriel Spark Society.
  • BIUNB
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    With a cover design by Lucienne Day When Mrs Hawkins tells Hector Bartlett he is a 'pisseur de copie', that he 'urinates frightful prose', little does she realise the repercussions. Holding that 'no life can be carried on satisfactorily unless people are honest' Mrs Hawkins refuses to retract her judgement, and as a consequence, loses not one, but two much-sought-after jobs in publishing. Now, years older, successful, and happily a far cry from Kensington, she looks back over the dark days that followed, in which she was embroiled in a mystery involving anonymous letters, quack remedies, blackmail and suicide.
  • BIBJY
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    Miss Jean Brodie is a rare breed of teacher - passionate, independent-minded and romantically inspired, with not the slightest care for convention. She soon garners a devoted following of six young girls, who will become known as 'the Brodie set', and begins to shape them in her own image. But Miss Brodie is more than just an individual with an intense desire to control and mould her girls. Beneath the facade of this self-possessed woman lie some sinister truths, and a keen interest in fascism ...A tour de force of contemporary Scottish literature, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark is a compelling portrait of a woman's dark quest for immortality. This Macmillan Collector's Library edition features an afterword by publisher Anna South. Designed to appeal to the booklover, the Macmillan Collector's Library is a series of beautiful gift editions of much-loved classic titles. Macmillan Collector's Library are books to love and treasure.
  • BLWJT
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    From the cruel irony of 'A member of the Family' to the fateful echoes of 'The Go-Away Bird' and the unexpectedly sinister 'The Girl I Left Behind Me', in settings that range from South Africa to the Portobello Road, Muriel Spark probes the idiosyncrasies that lurk beneath the veneer of human respectability, displaying the acerbic wit and wisdom that are the hallmarks of her unique talent. The Complete Short Stories is a collection to be loved and cherished, from one of the finest short story writers of the twentieth century.
  • AADSG
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    Set in an all girls school in Edinburgh during the 1930s, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie is a classic short novel that documents the growth of the teacher?s set of students. Written by Muriel Spark, this is a superbly observant story that draws many interesting conclusions about human behaviour ? chiefly rivalry and trust - many of which still hit home nearly 50 years on from the date it was first published. Full of liberal thinking, sexual awakening and some unexpectedly sinister scenes, this is a surprising read.

  • ASMRM
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    'One of her funniest novels ...Spark at her sharpest, her purest and her most merciful' ALI SMITH In The Finishing School Muriel Spark is once again at her biting, satirical best. On the edge of Lake Geneva in Switzerland, a struggling would-be novelist and his wife run a finishing school of questionable reputation to keep the funds flowing. When a seventeen-year-old student's writing career begins to show great promise, tensions run high. A keen portrait of devouring regret, psychological unravelling and the glittering promise of youth, The Finishing School is the perfect natural partner to Muriel Spark's most famous novel The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie.
  • AGUDI
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    This is beautifully packaged reissue of Muriel Spark's best loved novel, "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie". 'You girls are my vocation...I am dedicated to you in my prime'. Miss Jean Brodie is a schoolmistress with a difference. She is proud, cultured and romantic but her educational ideas are highly progressive and even deeply shocking. So when she decides to transform a group of 'special girls' into the creme de la creme at Marcia Blaine School they are soon known, perhaps suspiciously, as the Brodie set. Introduced to an unsettling world of adult games and curious intrigues, the Brodie Set know that they are honoured and privileged. Yet there is a price to pay - they must give Miss Brodie their undivided loyalty..."The most gifted and innovative British novelist of her generation". (David Lodge, "The New York Times"). "Spark's novels linger in the mind as brilliant shards". (John Updike, "New Yorker"). "One of the greatest books about growing up". (James Wood, "Guardian"). Muriel Spark was born and educated in Edinburgh. She was active in the field of creative writing since 1950, when she won a short-story writing competition in the "Observer", and her many subsequent novels include "Memento Mori" (1959), "The Ballad of Peckham Rye" (1960), "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie" (1961), "The Girls of Slender Means" (1963) and "Aiding and Abetting" (2000). She also wrote plays, poems, children's books and biographies. She became Dame Commander of the British Empire in 1993, and died in 2006.
  • AJDHS
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    Robert wants nothing more than to become a serious art historian. But his hopes for an academic life are put on hold when he's driven from London to Venice to escape one lover and seek out another: the enigmatic Bulgarian refugee Lina Pancev. In Venice, Robert encounters a grand carnival of lust, lies, blackmail, cocktail parties and regicide. As he chases Lina, his heart's desire, the city itself provides a priceless education in love, art and beauty.
  • BPNNN
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    Geneva. As a ferocious thunderstorm rages outside, behind the locked doors of the library the aristocratic Klopstocks are `not to be disturbed'. In the attic, Baron Klopstock's lunatic brother rants and raves. But in the staff quarters, all is under control. The butler and servants are making their own preparations for the long night that follows . . . This is one of the 22 novels written by Muriel Spark in her lifetime. All are being published by Polygon in hardback Centenary Editions between November 2017 and September 2018.
  • BKWNN
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    A bewitching comic masterpiece, The Ballad of Peckham Rye relates the tale of one Dougal Douglas, who is taken on by a small textile firm to `bring vision into the lives of the workers'. A devilishly charismatic force of nature who likes nothing better than to stir things up, he takes great delight in wreaking havoc with the locals. Nervous breakdowns, sexual misdemeanours, a heart attack and murder ensue . . . This is Spark at her most ingenious. The publishers acknowledge investment from Creative Scotland towards the publication of this book. Supported by the Muriel Spark Society.
  • BKWWO
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    Caroline Rose has a problem. She hears voices and the incessant tapping of typewriter keys, and she seems to be a character in a novel . . . A comedy of errors, a crime novel, a book about books, Spark's debut remains as otherworldly and mischievous as it was when first published sixty years ago. The publishers acknowledge investment from Creative Scotland towards the publication of this book. Supported by the Muriel Spark Society.
  • BQYNK
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    Described by Gore Vidal as `a novel written at the top of her form and so unique', Reality and Dreams concerns the delirious, egocentric film director Tom Richards, who is recovering from injuries sustained while falling off a crane on set. His obsessive passion to make a film about a simple young woman sucks his wife, daughters, lovers and friends into a maelstrom of destruction. This is one of the 22 novels written by Muriel Spark in her lifetime. All are being published by Polygon in hardback Centenary Editions between November 2017 and September 2018.
  • BQXQE
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    Hildegard Wolf is a German psychiatrist who lives a comfortable life in Paris. When she encounters a client who claims to be Lord Lucan, she can't help but be intrigued. After all, he's the second man who has claimed to be the elusive lord. But which one is the imposter? This is one of the 22 novels written by Muriel Spark in her lifetime. All are being published by Polygon in hardback Centenary Editions between November 2017 and September 2018.
  • AGJGF
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    When Barbara Vaughan's fiance joins an archaeological excursion to the Dead Sea Scrolls, she takes the opportunity to explore the Holy Land. It is 1961, and the nation of Israel is still in its infancy. For Barbara, a half-Jewish Catholic convert, this is a journey of faith, and she ignores warnings not to cross the Mandelbaum Gate from Israel into Jordan. An adventure of espionage and abduction, from pilgrimage to flight, The Mandelbaum Gate is one of Spark's most compelling novels, and won the James Tait Memorial Prize.
  • AQMBJ
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    The Bachelors displays the best of Sparkian satire, placing her at the heart of a great literary tradition alongside Waugh and Trollope, Wilde and Wodehouse. It demands rediscovery. 'It's easy to see why Waugh admired The Bachelors. On one level, it is a blithely carnivorous satire in the Waugh mould. The bachelors of the title - almost the only men we meet in the narrative - are the thirty-something male barristers, teachers, journalists and museum attendants of a small patch of West London. They lead inturned, doddery, superannuated lives, pottering between grocers, coffee-houses, bedsits and the houses of their mothers and aunts. But the comedy here is serious in a way that Waugh's satanically energetic comedies of misery rarely are ...comedies of English manners have seldom been darker' Daily Telegraph 'My admiration for Spark's contribution to world literature knows no bounds. She was peerless, sparkling, inventive and intelligent - the creme de la creme' Ian Rankin 'Muriel Spark's novels linger in the mind as brilliant shards, decisive as a smashed glass is decisive' John Updike, New Yorker
  • BCAZP
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    In the summer of 1816, aged nineteen, Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein. A pioneering work of science fiction, it captured the popular imagination from the start. The daughter of radical philosopher William Godwin and pioneering feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Shelley lived an unconventional life marred by tragedy. At sixteen she scandalised England by eloping with her married lover, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, but was widowed after only a few years when he drowned. She survived him by nearly thirty years, supporting herself and their one surviving son largely by the pen. Muriel Spark had a lifelong fascination with Mary Shelley. She published her first book on her in 1951, then spent decades revising and refining it. It is reissued here with previously unpublished material. Spark paints an engaging portrait of a complex and misunderstood figure. She divides her study into parts, 'Biographical' and 'Critical'. A sympathetic account of Shelley's life is followed by critical studies of her major literary works. Spark's abridgement of Shelley's uneven apocalyptic novel The Last Man is included here, while her initial scheme for the book and her later preface, in which she reflects on her own subsequent career as a novelist, are added. This is a fascinating study of Mary Shelley's life and work. It also provides valuable insight into the critical and creative development of Muriel Spark.
  • BPNDX
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    'Remember you must die.' Dame Lettie Colston is the first of her circle to receive insinuating anonymous phone calls. Neither she, nor her friends, wish to be reminded of their mortality, and their geriatric feathers are thoroughly ruffled. As the caller's activities become more widespread, old secrets are dusted off, exposing post and present duplicities, self-deception and blackmail. Nobody is above suspicion. Witty, poignant and wickedly hilarious, Memento Mori may ostensibly concern death, but it is a book which leaves one relishing life all the more. Books included in the VMC 40th anniversary series include: Frost in May by Antonia White; The Collected Stories of Grace Paley; Fire from Heaven by Mary Renault; The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter; The Weather in the Streets by Rosamond Lehmann; Deep Water by Patricia Highsmith; The Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West; Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston; Heartburn by Nora Ephron; The Dud Avocado by Elaine Dundy; Memento Mori by Muriel Spark; A View of the Harbour by Elizabeth Taylor; and Faces in the Water by Janet Frame
  • BPNMH
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    During World War II, Elsa and Paul were involved in secret propaganda work in England. It is now 1973 and they are living in New York. Elsa is convinced that a German ex-POW - and former lover - who has appeared in New York, may be planning to kill them. And what's more, her shadow is pointing in the wrong direction: to the East. This is one of the 22 novels written by Muriel Spark in her lifetime. All are being published by Polygon in hardback Centenary Editions between November 2017 and September 2018.
  • BIJCQ
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    Muriel Sparks's celebrated autobiography has been unavailable since her death in 2006. This new edition adds a preface by the poet and biographer Elaine Feinstein.
  • BQHYN
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    Wealthy Canadian scholar Harvey Gotham lives in splendid isolation in France and is working on a book about Job. He loves his wife, Effie, dearly but she has taken to planting bombs in supermarkets and has joined an anarchist group. Here, Spark returns to the Book of Job, which had always fascinated her, and `the only problem' - the problem of suffering. Why does God allow it? A despairing and exhilarating read, The Only Problem is a masterwork. This is one of the 22 novels written by Muriel Spark in her lifetime. All are being published by Polygon in hardback Centenary Editions between November 2017 and September 2018.
  • BROQA
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    Described by Time Magazine as `a lethal comedy', Symposium centres around a dinner party and the lives of the five couples in attendance, including a burglary ring, a convent of Marxist nuns and several unexplained deaths. A devilish tale. This is one of the 22 novels written by Muriel Spark in her lifetime. All are being published by Polygon in hardback Centenary Editions between November 2017 and September 2018.