Author of the Month: Muriel Spark

In advance of the centenary of her birth on 1 February, we have declared Muriel Spark our author of the month for January. Celebrated chiefly for her novels, Spark was also a talented poet, essayist and critic. John Updike wrote of her in the New Yorker ‘Muriel Spark’s novels linger in the mind as brilliant shards, decisive as a smashed glass is decisive.’ Read more about her life and work here, or drop in to Bury Place to browse our dedicated Spark table.

The Ballad of Peckham Rye

Muriel Spark, introduction by William Boyd

From the publisher:

A man of devilish charm and enterprising spirit, Dougal Douglas is employed to revitalize the ailing firm of Meadows, Meade & Grindley. Strange things begin to happen as ...

The Golden Fleece: Essays

Muriel Spark

Christopher Tayler writes:

‘No two pictures of her look at all alike,’ Stephen Schiff wrote of Muriel Spark in 1993. ‘In one she may seem a sturdy English rose, in another a seductress ...

The Driver’s Seat

Muriel Spark, introduction by John Lanchester

From the publisher:

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, ...

Symposium

Muriel Spark, introduction by Ian Rankin

From the publisher:

Seemingly banal dinner-party chat reveals strange tales of the guests’ dodgy pasts and unreliable futures. Symposium is Muriel Spark at her wicked best.

Robinson

Muriel Spark, introduction by Candia McWilliam, series edited by Alan Taylor

From the publisher:

Bound for the Azores, a plane crashes onto an isolated island somewhere in the North Atlantic. January Marlow is one of the three survivors – and the only woman. She wakes ...

The Finishing School

Muriel Spark

From the publisher:

Now available as a stunning Canon ‘A work of glittering Sparkian ice, whose thinly frozen surface tempts you to jump up and down jovially above something deeper and ...

Mary Shelley

Muriel Spark

From the publisher:

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 ...

Memento Mori

Muriel Spark, introduction by A. L. Kennedy

From the publisher:

A brilliant, daring and darkly funny novel by Muriel Spark, ‘mistress of the highest high comedy’ (The Times)

A Far Cry From Kensington

Muriel Spark, introduction by William Boyd, series edited by Alan Taylor

From the publisher:

A Far Cry from Kensington, Muriel Spark’s eighteenth novel, was first published in 1988.

The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie

Muriel Spark

From the publisher:

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 ...

The Girls of Slender Means

Muriel Spark

From the publisher:

A title written by the author of novels such as “Memento Mori” (1959), “The Ballad of Peckham Rye” (1960), “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie” (1961), “The Girls of ...

The Ballad of Peckham Rye

Muriel Spark, introduction by Ronald Frame, series edited by Alan Taylor

From the publisher:

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 Bachelors

Muriel Spark

From the publisher:

‘I am dazzled by The Bachelors. It is the cleverest and most elegant of all Spark’s clever and elegant books’ Evelyn Waugh Now available in print and eBook as a ...

Memento Mori

Muriel Spark, introduction by Zoe Strachan, series edited by Alan Taylor

From the publisher:

Described by David Lodge as her first masterpiece’, Memento Mori opens with a telephone call and the wordsRemember you must die’. Over several months, a circle of elderly ...

Collected Poems

Muriel Spark

From the publisher:

Spark’s poems are witty, idiosyncratic and haunting, transforming the familiar into glittering moments of strangeness, revealing the dark – and light – music beneath ...

The Comforters

Muriel Spark, introduction by Allan Massie, series edited by Alan Taylor

From the publisher:

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 ...