image of Iris Murdoch

Iris Murdoch

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Charles Arrowby, leading light of England's theatrical set, retires from glittering London to an isolated home by the sea. He plans to write a memoir about his great love affair with Clement Makin, his mentor, both professionally and personally, and amuse himself with Lizzie, an actress he has strung along for many …

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A lay community of thoroughly mixed-up people is encamped outside Imber Abbey, home of an order of sequestered nuns. A new bell is being installed when suddenly the old bell, a legendary symbol of religion and magic, is rediscovered. And then things begin to change. Meanwhile the wise old Abbess watches and prays and …

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Under the Net was the first novel of Iris Murdoch, published in 1954. Set in London, it is the story of a struggling young writer, Jake Donaghue. Its mixture of the philosophical and the picaresque has made it one of Murdoch's most popular. It was dedicated to Raymond Queneau. When Jake leaves Madge's flat in Chapter …

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Bradley Pearson, an unsuccessful novelist in his late fifties, has finally left his dull office job as an Inspector of Taxes. Bradley hopes to retire to the country, but predatory friends and relations dash his hopes of a peaceful retirement. He is tormented by his melancholic sister, who has decided to come live with …

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A novel about the frightfulness and ruthlessness of being in loveMartin Lynch-Gibson believes he can possess both a beautiful wife and a delightful lover. But when his wife, Antonia, suddenly leaves him for her psychoanalyst, Martin is plunged into an intensive emotional reeducation. He attempts to behave beautifully …

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A brilliant mythical drama about well-meaning people trapped in a war of spiritual forcesMarian Taylor, who has come as a “companion” to a lovely woman in a remote castle, becomes aware that her employer is a prisoner, not only of her obsessions, but of an unforgiving husband.Hannah, the Unicorn, seemingly an image of …

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A Fairly Honourable Defeat is a novel by the British writer and philosopher Iris Murdoch. Published in 1970, it was her thirteenth novel.

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From the Booker Prize-winning author of The Sea, The Sea comes a story about revenge and reconciliation, and the difference between being nice and being good. John Ducane, a respected Whitehall civil servant, is asked to investigate the suicide of a colleague. As he pursues his inquiry, he uncovers a shabby, evil …

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Full of suspense, humor, and symbolism, this magnificently crafted and magical novel replays biblical and medieval themes in contemporary London. An attempt by the sharp, feral, and uncommonly intelligent Lucas Graffe to murder his sensual and charismatic half-brother Clement is interrupted by a stranger—whom Lucas …

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A Word Child is the 17th novel by Iris Murdoch. First published in 1975 by Chatto and Windus, A Word Child charts the trials and tribulations of the title character, the "word child", Hilary Burde as he attempts to recover his soul from the misery of his troubled past. Filled in the usual Murdoch style with an array …