Sophie and the Sibyl: A Victorian Romance
A brilliant, playful novel of George Eliot, of literature, of a relationship between an author and her publisher, and of a surprising romance
Sophie and the Sibyl is wonderful; I was transfixed. It's not just the fiendishly clever blending of real-life and fiction, I was completely gripped all the way through. I love Sophie and Max. They are an Eliot hero and heroine but written for now. But most of all of course I love George Eliot, the Sibyl. I'm not sure now that I'll ever be able to read any novel by her in the same way again Kathryn Hughes Patricia Duncker should be made a DBE Louis de Bernieres As heady an intellectual game with feminism and creativity as her cult debut Hallucinating Foucault did with sexuality and madness, the witty conceit here being to wrap the whole thing in the story of her namesake's dealings with George Eliot, whom she brings deliciously to life as a sly subversive. Erotic, funny, intensely evocative, Sophie and the Sibyl will prove a richly deserved game-changer for this novelist's novelist Patrick Gale
Patricia Duncker is the author of five previous novels: Hallucinating Foucault (winner of the Dillons First Fiction Award and the McKitterick Prize in 1996), The Deadly Space Between, James Miranda Barry, Miss Webster and Cherif (shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize in 2007) and The Strange Case of the Composer and his Judge (shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger award for Best Crime Novel of the Year in 2010). She has written two books of short fiction, Monsieur Shoushana's Lemon Trees (shortlisted for the Macmillan Silver Pen Award in 1997) and Seven Tales of Sex and Death, and a collection of essays, Writing on the Wall. Patricia Duncker is Professor of Contemporary Literature at the University of Manchester.