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The Portobello Road and Other Stories

3.62  ·  Rating Details  ·  48 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
Four stories that illustrate Muriel Spark's unique wit and wisdom: 'The Portobello Road', 'Bang-bang You're Dead', 'The Seraph and the Zambesi' and 'The Dragon' (all taken from The Collected Stories).
Paperback, Penguin 60s, 86 pages
Published July 6th 1995 by Penguin
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 Carol ♛ Type, Oh Queen! ♛
If you can find them, these Penguin 60s (a series published in 1994) are wonderful- small & light, just perfect for slipping into a handbag.

Although I'm not normally a short story fan, these stories are very easy to slip into & certainly not lightweight!What a gift Spark had with her detached, icy cold yet perceptive prose! The Portobello Road was the most unpredictable for me, but I enjoyed all four stories.

Brilliant.
Coenraad
Dec 16, 2014 Coenraad rated it it was amazing
During 2014 I have often waxed lyrical over discoveries of authors unknown to me whose work was selected for the Penguin 60 series. I should look back when I have completed reading the set and rank the most startling discoveries. I am quite convinced that this set of four stories by Muriel Spark will be placed close to the top of the list, if it does not make it to the top. Her intricate portrayal of human relationships, especially as depicted in 'Bang-bang you're dead', is breathtaking in itsel ...more
Snort
Dec 20, 2012 Snort rated it liked it
I'm reaching out for slim novellas as a sneaky bid to boost my annual book count, now that the end of 2012 neighs near. I know this, because it is my practice to jealously ration the oeuvre of my favourite authors (especially the dead ones), and I’ve already done a near-alarming number of Muriel Sparks this year – beginning with "Not To Disturb", "Robinson" and "The Abbess of Crewe".

This is a collection of four (!) short stories – to whet one’s appetite as an entrée to her other works, as they
...more
Sally McRogerson
Jul 31, 2011 Sally McRogerson rated it it was ok
I'm not a fan of Muriel Sparks and this mini book of (connected) short stories did nothing to change that. There is, however, a great quote in it that resonates with me which I've replicated here:-

"A life like mine annoys most people; they go to their jobs every day, attend to things, give orders, pummel typerwriters, and get two or threee weeks off every year, and it vexes them to see someone else not bothering to do these things and yet getting away wth it, not starving, being lucky as they ca
...more
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13093
Dame Muriel Spark, DBE was a prolific Scottish novelist, short story writer, and poet whose darkly comedic voice made her one of the most distinctive writers of the twentieth century. In 2008 The Times newspaper named Spark in its list of "the 50 greatest British writers since 1945".

Spark received the James Tait Black Memorial Prize in 1965 for The Mandelbaum Gate, the Ingersoll Foundation TS Eli
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