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The Heart of Mars by Paul Magrs Read the opening extract of the brand new Paul Magrs book before its publication on 15/03/2018

Muriel Spark Book and Novel

Muriel Spark - Author

Muriel Spark, DBE, C.Litt., was born in Edinburgh in 1918 and educated in Scotland. A poet and novelist, she also wrote children’s books, radio plays, a comedy Doctors of Philosophy, (first performed in London in 1962 and published 1963) and biographies of nineteenth-century literary figures, including Mary Shelley and Emily Brontë.

For her long career of literary achievement, which began in 1951, when she won a short-story competition in the Observer, Muriel Spark garnered international praise and many awards, which include the David Cohen Prize for Literature, the Ingersoll T.S. Eliot Award, the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, the Boccaccio Prize for European Literature, the Gold Pen Award, the first Enlightenment Award and the Italia Prize for dramatic radio. She died in 2006.

Author photo © P A Archive and Press Association Images

If you like Muriel Spark you might also like to read books by Shena Mackay, William Trevor and Iris Murdoch.

Featured Books, with extracts, by Muriel Spark

The Driver's Seat by Muriel Spark
The Driver's Seat
Muriel Spark
‘She wrote The Driver’s Seat in under eight weeks in 1969. Trips away from her desk in Rome were mainly for shopping… I mean, what is shopping, what is a purchase, if not a more or less intense moment of...
Format: Hardback - Released: 09/03/2018
The Public Image by Muriel Spark
The Public Image
Muriel Spark
‘Annabel Christopher, an English actress of the 1960s, is described to us by everybody: her husband, their friends, neighbours, directors, film buffs, reporters and, repeatedly, by Spark herself, who circles ever closer to her prey… Spark doesn’t ignore the difficulties...
Format: Hardback - Released: 09/03/2018
The Bachelors by Muriel Spark
The Bachelors
Muriel Spark
‘[The Bachelors] appeared at a time when, in the words of her biographer Martin Stannard, she ‘sensed the possibility of a radical change in the direction of her career – towards the theatre’… The theatrical infatuation cooled down, but The...
Format: Hardback - Released: 08/02/2018
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie
Muriel Spark
‘By 1960, Spark was a novelist of some renown. But it was her next novel, her sixth, which would make her famous and well off enough to determine where and how she wanted to live, and the books she would...
Format: Hardback - Released: 08/02/2018
The Girls of Slender Means by Muriel Spark
The Girls of Slender Means
Muriel Spark
‘There is a palpable sense as The Girls of Slender Means opens of the curtain rising, catching people in mid-conversation, in half-spoken sentences, and banal acts that, ordinary though they seem, prove to be telling. A slender novel it might...
Format: Hardback - Released: 08/02/2018
The Mandelbaum Gate by Muriel Spark
The Mandelbaum Gate
Muriel Spark
‘It is clear that the novel was meant by Spark to be different from those she had previously written… For one thing it was considerably longer than the earlier books; for another it seemed to consist of a much more...
Format: Hardback - Released: 08/02/2018
A Far Cry From Kensington by Muriel Spark
A Far Cry From Kensington
Muriel Spark
‘Like most people, I came to Spark’s work through the 1969 film of The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and this prompted me to start reading her other novels… Her novels are very varied – there are surreal novels, allegorical...
Format: Hardback - Released: 07/12/2017
The Ballad of Peckham Rye by Muriel Spark
The Ballad of Peckham Rye
Muriel Spark
‘You either ‘get’ Spark or you don’t. She always was different, and became more so with practice. An appetite for caricatures, for types… The Ballad of Peckham Rye is a comedy – some critics have trouble remembering that – filled...
Format: Hardback - Released: 02/11/2017
The Comforters by Muriel Spark
The Comforters
Muriel Spark
'There are two plots in The Comforters. One is fanciful and improbable; the other imaginative and convincingly real. The first is charming; the second disturbing… There is evidence of what would come to be recognised as the characteristic Spark touch:...
Format: Hardback - Released: 02/11/2017
Memento Mori by Muriel Spark
Memento Mori
Muriel Spark
'One of the many delights of a Muriel Spark novel is the way in which the ground shifts so delicately under the reader’s feet. In an interview to mark the publication of the book in 1959, Spark said: ‘The prospect...
Format: Hardback - Released: 02/11/2017
Robinson by Muriel Spark
Muriel Spark
'Robinson is Spark’s second novel. Already she has her great subjects: truth, power, faith, what we may do to pretend or delude ourselves that we have agency in our own lives, what powers an artist, perhaps specifically a novelist, may...
Format: Hardback - Released: 02/11/2017
The Complete Short Stories by Muriel Spark
The Complete Short Stories
Muriel Spark
Muriel Spark coolly 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,...
Format: Paperback - Released: 18/08/2011
The Driver's Seat by Muriel Spark
The Driver's Seat
Muriel Spark
Shortlisted for the Lost Man Booker Prize. A short but perfectly formed novel about a woman who decides to change the direction her life is going in. However it soon becomes clear that searching for adventure may not have...
Format: Paperback - Released: 27/04/2006
Finishing School by Muriel Spark
Finishing School
Muriel Spark
An eloquent, satirical, lovely tale of jealousy and envy, it fair sparkles off the page. A pure delight, as one would expect. Comparison: Iris Murdoch, William Trevor, Hilary Mantel.Similar this month: Philip Hensher, Alan...
Format: Paperback (b Format) - Released: 28/04/2005

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