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The Devil's Own Work: Valancourt 20th…

The Devil's Own Work: Valancourt 20th Century Classics (edition 2017)

by Alan Judd (Author), Matt Godfrey (Narrator), Valancourt Books (Publisher)

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1024168,584 (3.67)7
Title:The Devil's Own Work: Valancourt 20th Century Classics
Authors:Alan Judd (Author)
Other authors:Matt Godfrey (Narrator), Valancourt Books (Publisher)
Info:Valancourt Books (2017)
Collections:Your library, Audiobooks, Read in 2017

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The Devil's Own Work by Alan Judd



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English (3)  Italian (1)  All languages (4)
Showing 3 of 3
An astonishing book, written with great technical virtuosity and containing Hidden Depths. A promising young writer makes a Faustian bargain, whereby he is able to write astonishing books of great technical virtuosity, but that lack any sort of depth nor portray the world in any real way. Bad things happen to him. A mordant look at English letters. ( )
  SomeGuyInVirginia | Oct 6, 2017 |
This book tells the story of Edward, a writer, who achieves fame via a mysterious manuscript passed to him by a former "great" writer. Along with the manuscript, Edward also gets a woman. The manuscript is responsible for Edward becoming a world-renowned author. In fact, he can no longer write his own material. He can only write from the manuscript. And his new female companion never seems to age and does seem to control him at every juncture. This is a spooky story, but in my opinion, moves slowly and lacks true drama. It questions the creative muse and sheds light on the process, however, and it a worthwhile read because of that. It will not keep you awake at night, but does hold the reader's interest in a paced and sedate way. It is, of course, well written. ( )
  karenwodke | Jan 14, 2011 |
Stephen King said, in a blurb on the cover of the book, that this was the best book he had read all year. Well, if so, I think Mr. King was doing a lot more writing than reading. The two discussions on LT were positive. It must be me because I was a bit disappointed in the book.

Not that it was terrible or badly written. It just seemed flat to me, pedestrian and without spark. It evoked no spark of tension or anticipation. As I said the problem could certainly be me. I leave it to anyone who reads the book to make up their own mind. I will neither recommend nor denigrate the book. ( )
  xenchu | May 12, 2010 |
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Alan Juddprimary authorall editionscalculated
Godfrey, MattNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
King, OwenIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mecklenburg, SusanneÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Melli, FrancescaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0679747451, Paperback)

This modern version of the Faust legend has an old man of letters pass down to a young writer an ancient manuscript which bestows the gift of easy literary style and fluency -- and consequently head-turning success -- while blocking entirely any genuine creative power. To underline the devilishness of the bargain, the young author is seen to gradually throw away normal human decency as he gives in to overwhelming self-indulgence, and comes under the sensual sway of the old man's seductive mistress. On one level then, pure Faust. On another, Alan Judd's book, winner of the 1991 Guardian Fiction Prize, is a sophisticated self-referential commentary on the cliquish post-modern literary scene. This stylish and substantial novel is a clever attack on those who elevate insubstantial style.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:10 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

An unknown writer becomes possessed by a literary spirit who makes him famous. A parable on the perils of creativity and what can happen when an artist surrenders to the charms of fame. The novel won the 1991 Guardian Fiction Prize in England.

(summary from another edition)

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