The Murdstone Trilogy Hardcover – 6 Nov 2014
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'A genuinely funny comedy - with a Pratchettian mix of gusto and warmth...This may be Mal Peet's first book for grownups, but it is an assured, even virtuoso, performance fully deserving that most prestigious of accolades - a rave review in the Guardian.' - The Guardian; 'The Murdstone Trilogy has instantly become one of my favourite books - right up there with Terry Pratchett and The Princess Bride for fantasy comedy. The writing is sublime and the humour is lacerating. I loved every warped sentence.' - Eoin Colfer; 'I enjoyed this novel hugely. It had a fat, throbbing vein of dark hilarity running right through the middle, with skewered literary personages shrieking and wittering either side. It's a complete nutty fantasy, and yet there's enough weird truth in it to really worry any writer - oh, okay, any reader - who picks it up. If you've ever wondered what the heck writers do all day, The Murdstone Trilogy will give you a good idea - bwahaha - ' - Margo Lanagan; 'Read it whatever your age and find yourself laughing pretty well at every page - it really is that good.' - The Independent; 'Comic gold...deliciously funny, and the story-within-a-story is a glorious send-up of the genre'. - Financial Times; '[Murdstone and Pocket are] expertly drawn... A refreshing and absorbing change of pace.' - SFX Magazine
About the Author
For the past decade Mal Peet has been quietly accruing literary awards in the UK, the USA and Europe. He lives in Devon.
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The story is a sort of meta-fantasy (or phantasy, as Murdstone's agent, Minerva, would have it), where Philip Murdstone, a best-selling author within a rather specific niche market is ordered to write a blockbuster fantasy, a genre he has neither time nor respect for. One evening, after a heavy session on the local guest ale he stumbles up to the local standing stone circle and passes out. It is here that he dreams - Coleridge style - the entire plot of Dark Entropy (also the name of the guest ale).
From that point on he is sucked into a confusing dual world of gremes and necromancers, while still trying to keep up with his writing commitments in the "real" world.
The writing is brilliant, the story pretty much flawless, especially for anybody that's ever read any fantasy as it pokes fun at all the well-worn tropes.
In short, buy it!
Contains the best ever outline for formulaic fantasy fiction.
Don't make the mistake of thinking it's one of his teen novels and give it to your kids: It's surprisingly crude.
I've read Keeper, Life an Unexploded Diagram, Tamar and this the Murdstone Trilogy was the hardest to put down, once opened. Everything about it works, it's light, it's fast, and there is real humour.