The divine Spark is shining at her brightest . . . Pure delight * Claire Tomalin, INDEPENDENT * An outstanding novel . . . A FAR CRY FROM KENSINGTON has an effortless, translucent grasp of the spirit of the period * OBSERVER * 'Wonderfully entertaining - full of absurd, comical, engaging characters and written with typical wit, elegance and aplomb * SUNDAY TELEGRAPH * One of Muriel Spark's most liberating, liberated and meditative novels. Spark is a writer who can take the meditative and make it mercurially funny, playful and mischievous * Ali Smith *
Muriel Spark, D.B.E, C. Litt, was born in Edinburgh in 1918. A poet and novelist, she also wrote children's books, radio plays, a comedy, 'Doctors of Philosophy', first performed in London in 1962, and biographies. She is best known for her stories and many successful novels, including Memento Mori, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Loitering With Intent, The Comforters, A Far Cry from Kensington and The Public Image. For her long career of literary achievement, Muriel Spark won international praise and many awards, including the David Cohen British Literature Award, the T. S. Eliot Award, the Saltire Prize, the Boccaccio Prize for European Literature, the Gold Pen Award and the Italia Prize for dramatic radio. Muriel Spark was given an honorary doctorate of Letters from a number of universities, London, Edinburgh and Oxford among these. She died in 2006. Ali Smith was born in Inverness and lives in Cambridge. She is the author of three collections of stories and three novels. Hotel World was shortlisted for both the Booker Prize and the Orange Prize in 2001 and her latest novel, The Accidental, won the 2006 Whitbread Novel Award. Ali reviews regularly for the Guardian, the Scotsman and the TLS.