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The Ballad of Peckham Rye by Muriel Spark
  

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‘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 with delicious volte-faces, which read to me like flash inspirations as Spark was writing… the author was on cruise control, astonishingly able to wrap everything up and exit in 130-odd sprightly pages… Time in Peckham runs circles. The prose will correspondingly fall into a rhythm; it is incantatory, ritualistic. Sprung like poetry, very close to song, this is the music to which Spark thinks.’ From the introduction by Ronald Frame.

This is one novel in the absolutely glorious, must-have, complete collection of all 22 novels by Muriel Spark. This series is a wonderful way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Muriel Spark’s birth. Edited by Alan Taylor, author of Appointment In Arezzo, A Friendship with Muriel Spark, each perfectly sized and beautiful hardback book is introduced by a leading writer. Each introduction, while individually touching on thoughts and feelings, mentions the originality, the wit and humour, the cleverness of the writing. Whether an existing fan, or new to her works, this collection from one of our greatest writers, beckons, and quite simply, just asks to be read and re-read. ~ Lovereading.co.uk

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

Synopsis

The Ballad of Peckham Rye by Muriel Spark

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.

Reviews

Often referred to as ‘the writer’s writer’, Spark’s work has garnered acclaim around
the globe:

“[Spark] has written some things that seem likely to go on being read as long as fiction in English is read at all.” – New York Times Book Review

“The greatest Scottish novelist of modern times . . . my admiration for Spark's contribution to literature knows no bounds” – Ian Rankin

“Some of [Spark's] finest fictions are novellas rather than novels, short enough to be read in a single dizzying sitting." – David Lodge

About the Author

Muriel Spark

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

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Book Info

Publication date

2nd November 2017

Author

Muriel Spark

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Publisher

Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited an imprint of Birlinn General

Format

Hardback
144 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
Crime / Mystery
Literary Fiction
Muriel Spark 100

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN

9781846974281

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