The Devil's Own Work

Front Cover
Flamingo, 1992 - Authors - 96 pages
3 Reviews
'At once moral fable, cautionary ghost story and inspired attack on the whole hellbent drift of modern letters, this is a splendid tale, splendidly told, which Ford or Henry James would have been glad to have written.' Robert Nye, Guardian A world-renowned writer living in the South of France owes his extraordinary career to a mysterious literary spirit - or is it a demon?- that controls him. The existence of this supernatural muse, and the price it exacts, remain hidden until the famous writer's death, when the spirit is transferred to a rising but as yet unformed literary hopeful, whose own celebrity begins immediately and inexplicably to grow. The only clues to these two possessions are an ancient, inscrutable manuscript and the continuing presence of an apparently ageless woman who attaches herself in turn to these gifted but soon distracted and eventually desperate men. And as the narrator, a guileless teacher of literature, pieces their stories together, we begin to see what can happen when an artist surrenders to the charm of fame. 'This novel delighted and terrified me as it must terrify writers, showing them a pit of hell.' Ruth Rendell, Daily Telegraph, Books of the Year

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - SomeGuyInVirginia - LibraryThing

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 ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - karenwodke - LibraryThing

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 ... Read full review


Section 1
Section 2
Section 3

3 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1992)

Alan Judd's 'Ford Madox Ford' won the Royal Society of Literature and Heinemann Awards; his novella, 'The Devil's Own Work', won the Guardian fiction prize. His celebrated novel 'A Breed of Heroes' was recently screened on BBC1. He is the author of three other novels, and has recently retired from the Foreign Office.

Bibliographic information