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How to Make Friends with Demons
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How to Make Friends with Demons

3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  565 ratings  ·  92 reviews
William Heaney is a man well acquainted with demons. Not his broken family — his wife has left him for a celebrity chef, his snobbish teenaged son despises him, and his daughter's new boyfriend resembles Nosferatu — nor his drinking problem, nor his unfulfilling government job, but real demons. For demons are real, and William has identified one thousand five hundred and s ...more
Hardcover, 298 pages
Published November 1st 2008 by Night Shade Books (first published March 1st 2001)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,104)
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Jennifer
I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I picked this one up to read. I did not expect to sit an entire day and finish the entire book. I did not expect to cry. I though I might laugh, and yes I did several times out loud. I did not expect to have a verbal conversation with the story teller. At one point I might have said "Why did you not go home with that women you crazy man". Again I was sucked into this world. What world you ask. Well I am not sure. The world that cats see and we can't? The w ...more
Kristen
Well, I read all 308 pages of this book, but I'm not exactly sure how to write a review of it, because truthfully, I don't have the first clue of what the hell the book was about, or what actually happened in it.

There was something about demons attaching themselves to people, forgeries of rare books, poetry written by one person passed of as that of another, broken marriages, a slightly deranged story about what happened to a British soldier serving in Iraq that seems to suggest demonic involvem
...more
Kendra
“It was like falling off the world, and falling for days, until you hit a shelf. There you lay for a while until, struggling to your feet in the dark, you found steps hewn in the stone. Though your heart felt too heavy to climb the steps, climb them you did, knowing they were without number.”

Note: In the US, this book is "How to Make Friends With Demons" by Graham Joyce

Graham Joyce never fails for me. He remains my favorite author. Seamlessly balancing this world and the surreal, he uses clear s
...more
Lynda Rucker
Graham Joyce, so brilliant as always. It's frustrating that such a fine writer seems consistently unable to break out to the larger mainstream. He'd easily fit alongside, say, Michael Chabon, but I think he's better.
Nádia Batista
Graham Joyce apaixonou-me desde o primeiro livro que li seu, Os Factos da Vida. Mal tive oportunidade de ler outra obra sua, não hesitei, e assim Memórias de um Mestre Falsário veio parar às minhas mãos. As expectativas para esta leitura eram muito altas, e não fiquei desiludida.

A história é acerca de um homem, William Heaney, que escreve poesia para um amigo - poesia muito apreciada - e que tem como ocupação falsificar livros antigos e raros, cujo lucro reverte a favor de uma associação solidár
...more
Stephen Theaker
The cover design of this book led me to expect a pseudo-Victorian adventure, but this is actually a modern, urban book set in a London of lobby groups and homeless shelters.

William Heaney got involved in some supernatural shenanigans at university and now, middle-aged, is up to his ears in dodgy deals that are starting to fall apart - and he sees demons everywhere. In the middle of this he meets an fascinating and beautiful young woman who takes an unaccountable interest in him, but he still fee
...more
Alan
Mar 16, 2010 Alan rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Readers aligned along the Holt/Moore axis
Recommended to Alan by: Its title
Okay, so right, so this guy Graham Joyce, he's written a book called How to Make Friends with Demons, okay? And it's kinda like that other book by the guy who wrote the book on Practical Demonkeeping, Christopher Moore—it's chatty and light, but it's about the Forces of Darkness all around us. The obligatory comparison to Douglas Adams is misplaced; this isn't that kind of humor (or humour) at all. But, you know, it's pretty good, actually... a fresh voice, a fresh perspective on the whole demon ...more
Barbara
Sinipse: William Heaney é uma fraude. Ainda assim, uma fraude cheia de charme. Escritor de talento, prefere escrevinhar poesia para um amigo (que se torna famoso à conta disso). Produz também primeiras edições falsas de obras de Jane Austen para espoliar os tolos e ambiciosos coleccionadores de primeiras edições. Mas não é maldoso. O dinheiro vai direitinho para um lar de sem-abrigo, e os seus crimes na verdade não fazem mal a ninguém. Há razões para não ter chegado mais longe. Quando jovem fez ...more
William
I found this book while browsing the new book shelf at the Milwaukee Public Library.

It was published in the UK as "Memoirs of a Master Forger."

The protagonist has a real job which pays the bills, but moonlights in a ring that forges antique books.

The proceeds from the forgeries are donated to charity.

An odd book which also includes a Lovecraftian "Call up not...." theme.
Sara Schenström
I think you have to be a very specific kind of person to appreciate this book, and I'm not that kind of person. I can see why someone would like it, but to me it was just messy. I did like it for a few moments when I thought it was going to become all mysterious, but then it didn't and I just finished it to make sure there really wasn't any more to it. Okay, the ending had some kind of deeper philosophical meaning, but that part in particular was very tedious to read. No, it just wasn't my cup o ...more
Rosie Ely
A coworker wanted me to read this. I just could not get into it. I really had a hard time grasping what the demons were supposed to represent and what the story was trying to say. In the end I gave up.
Jason Mills
Jul 01, 2014 Jason Mills rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Graham Joyce and demons
This pleasingly presented hardback is a Graham Joyce novel in disguise: the look and the pseudonym are forgery conceits in keeping with the book's theme. The gimmick must surely have impacted sales though; at any rate, it seems to have been later republished under Joyce's own name as How to Make Friends with Demons.

Our narrator is a lobbyist with a little antiquarian forgery business on the side. As his latest con inches along, we learn of his strange ability to see demons and the dark episode i
...more
Debbie
What an interesting idea, Memoirs of a master forger by William Heaney is a story about William Heaney. So is this a real memoir ? Fact or Fiction ?

Well I can reveal that Graham Joyce published this book called "How to make friends with a demon " and this is just under a different name.

William Heaney is a witty arty charactor with a dull government job who supports the local homeless shelter, despite a lack of money to do so. His backstory is interwoven with the main story and we learn how an in
...more
localfreak
William Heaney is a divorcee with three kids, after his wife ran off with a quasi-celebrity chef, he works for the government and also has a side project in which he counterfeits antiquated books.
He also spends most of his time with the kind of society that most people of his class wouldn’t spare a glance to, helping out Antonia who runs ‘GoPoint’ a homeless refuge in the middle of London, constantly under threat of closure.
He can also see demons.
If you’re looking, however, for a straightforwa
...more
Simon Mcleish
Originally published on my blog here in June 2011.

There are demons and angels around us, and some people can see them; William Blake was one such, and William Heaney is another. That is the premise of this novel. Heaney sees demons, but not angels, and he has them meticulously classified, into 1,567 distinct types, all of whom hang around and torment humanity (looking thoroughly miserable while they do so). He is an obsessive man on the fringes of the London literary scene, making his living by
...more
Sofia Teixeira
Um livro delicioso. Adorei adorei ler este livro. Confesso que já o tinha na minha pilha de livros há algum tempo e que ainda não me tinha despertado Aquela curiosidade, mas cada vez me convenço mais que cada livro tem o seu timing e que por vezes o que fazemos melhor é respeitá-lo.

Memórias de um Mestre Falsário é um romance que se devora. Mal se lê, devora-se. Graham Joyce brinda-nos com uma linguagem simples, mas cuidada. Desde a forma da narrativa, na primeira pessoa, à caracterização das per
...more
Liviu
The author is of course Graham Joyce and the book will be published in the US too as How to Make Friends with a Demon under his name, but the joke in the UK author byline works very well too...

I have never read Mr. Joyce's fiction before, tried once but did not hook me, but this book is so wonderful that it made me order 3 more books by him and if I like them even half as this one, I will get the rest too.

William Heaney is a mid-late forties UK government bureaucrat in charge of a Youth funding
...more
Peter
The plot of this book was unexpected. Despite the title, there's really very little about the character's life as a forger in it. Apparently it's also published as "How To Make Friends With Demons", which I think is a more sensible title.

The story itself is rather clever, but the writing style betrays that fact. Perhaps that is intentional. I wouldn't say it is a particularly thought provoking novel though, and I found the main character was a little shaky -- the narrative didn't seem entirely r
...more
L
This is a delightfully witty read, with interesting observations on the human condition along the way. I'm not sure if "magical realism" is a fair label or not. There are demons, though, right smack in the middle of everyday London life, and "fantasy-supernatural" really didn't fit, so . . .

William Heaney, our hero, lives with demons--his own, those of other people. He sees them everywhere and has a fair understanding of how they go about their business. He's a relatively high-level government b
...more
Rick
Sep 09, 2009 Rick rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: horror
William Heaney, head of the the UK’s National Organisation for Youth Advocacy, leads a troubled life. His wife left him for a celebrity pastry chef, his teenage son hates him, and his oldest daughter has moved back in with him — and brought along her boyfriend. Heaney can also see demons. In his latest novel, How to Make Friends With Demons, Graham Joyce brings these entities to vivid life for his readers, too.

Ever since a traumatic event in college some 20 years ago, Heaney witnesses the hidden
...more
Hazel
I cannot believe that no one else has read or reviewed this book. I admit at first it was completely different from what I expected. (If I had thought properly there would have been no reason for a Master Forger at the time the Jane Austen was publishing her own first editions!) This book completely exceeded my expectations and I only wish that it hadn't finished.

Following the main character as he wrestles with something that happened when he was at uni while working with his friends in the 'Ca
...more
Dee
A good read, but for my tastes it was rather too much like a made-for-television heartwarming midlife-reality-check with a hero who can see demons for no reason other than hiding the mundanity of the plot otherwise.

This was filed in the speculative fiction section of my bookstore. This is not speculative fiction. Sure, the hero can see demons, but there's no speculation about it. It doesn't ask what this means, what he should do with this, whether he'll survive this breach of 'reality'. It just
...more
Andrew
Sometimes you pick up a book which is a luxury: something you can
immerse yourself within and savour. This is one of them.

Ostensibly a story about a man who sees demons, this is much more involved than that old chestnut and so much better for it. I won't go into the plot because it's not fair to spoil something so well-crafted and lovingly told. Elements of mystery, love, honour, and selflessness abound; coupled with fascinating facts about London pubs and Gulf War conspiracy theories which add m
...more
Leippya
This book was a disappointment to me but it's my fault, to be honest. I was strolling in the bookshop when the cover caught my eyes. The back of the book made it sound as if demons starred prominently in the story and I love demon mythology... However it's not a story about demons, it's a story about people. Maybe a good one even, I'm not sure, as I didn't read this book with the right expectations and so didn't really enjoy it.

Demons are only a secondary character and although there's a couple
...more
doleary
Well. After reading some kind of fairy tale I suggested my book club stay with the theme and try another of his books. Did I just pick the wrong one? There are several great characters and some great story lines in here...but he seems to get distracted and not quite finish developing any of them. Maybe it should have been a series of shirt stories...
Griffin-ashe Peralta
An open love letter to fedora wearing "nice guys" everywhere.
Do you think that women should throw themselves on you because you treat them kindly and make yourself vulnerable to them?
Then this is the book for you.
Despite this book's problematic theme, it is well constructed, ably written, and sometimes humorous.
Melanti
I don't think either the title or the cover really reflect the contents well. The original title and cover Memoirs Of A Master Forger are a little better but still not that apt. Frankly, neither title or cover would have ever induced me to buy the book had I not already known I like Graham Joyce.

It's a very strange book and sort of rambling. It reminds me a little of Sean Stewart's Perfect Circle for some reason. 3 stars for now, but may be adjusting my rating up to 4 after I've had more time t
...more
Greg Benham
Firstly: this book has nothing to do with demons. There's not that much more about book forgery either.

Good to get that out of the way. Elements of the supernatural are very briefly touched upon in the book (roughly 1%) but this is in fact the dull and insipid tale of a do-gooding alcoholic wallowing in his own self-pity most of the time.

The only good thing was that it was a gift, and hence didn't feel hoodwinked as I would have done if I had paid money for it.
John Day
An amazing book. I recommend highly. Compares well with Neil Gaiman, but with a very distinctive voice. I can't believe I've never read anything by Graham Joyce before.
Marya
Normally, when I pick up a Graham Joyce book, I am sucked in and every word makes me laugh, think or bit my lip in anticipation. This novel however, did not quite capture my whole attention, and while written with Joyce's usual skill it fell flat with me. [return][return]I found myself wanting to know more about the side characters, and annoyed by the main character. His mid-life crisis seemed lame, and his fears silly. The other characters seemed more alive, more real, and their troubles seemed ...more
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Graham Joyce (22 October 1954 – 9 September 2014) was an English writer of speculative fiction and the recipient of numerous awards for both his novels and short stories.

After receiving a B.Ed. from Bishop Lonsdale College in 1977 and a M.A. from the University of Leicester in 1980. Joyce worked as a youth officer for the National Association of Youth Clubs until 1988. He subsequently quit his po
...more
More about Graham Joyce...
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“There is no "mid" about it. Life is a crisis from the cradle to the grave.” 32 likes
“The trouble with forgiveness is that some people don't want to be forgiven.” 25 likes
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