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About the Author

Alan Taylor has contributed to numerous publications, including The TLS, The New Yorker and The Melbourne Age, and edited four acclaimed anthologies - The Assassin's Cloak (2000), The Secret Annexe (2004), The Country Diaries (2009) and most recently, Glasgow: TheAutobiography (2016).


'an insightful, fond and gossipy read, with a Sparkian title to boot'

-- Kirsty Wark * The Observer *

'Sharply observant, Taylor's cautious, respectful, sincere and measured prose sustains what's at the core of the whole book: affection. A sense of liking runs through it. And from the moment of their first meeting, Spark seems to have recognised the affection, critical sensibility and genuineness of Taylor's has the method, the sensitivity to moments, the delicacy and strength, the senses of both vulnerability and durability, of one of Spark's favourites, Proust's In Search of Lost Time'

-- Alan Riach, Professor of Scottish Literature at Glasgow University * The National *

'a highly personal and often amusing new book about [Spark and Taylor's] friendship'

-- Marianne Taylor * Herald Magazine *

'an affectionate but clear-sighted memoir...Taylor creates a mosaic portrait of Spark, that is alert and alive almost novelistically nuanced. His introductory chapter would serve a casual reader or student ideally as an introduction to Spark and her work...'

-- Brian Morton * Herald *

'Anyone who loves Muriel Spark's novels will enjoy this intelligent and affectionate book. Anyone who reads it, though ignorant of the novels, will surely want to read them'

-- Allan Massie * Scotsman *

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