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Virago News

Moonlight, white satin, roses. A bride.

In this exclusive piece, Angela Carter biographer and academic Edmund Gordon explains what it is that makes The Magic Toyshop truly magical to him. The Magic Toyshop is Angela Carter’s second novel, but the first to feature the heady surrealism that flavours all her greatest work. Zinging with lovely sentences and rich, uncanny images, it […]

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Margaret Atwood Competition: Win signed prizes and tickets to an exclusive event

Atwood fans, assemble! This year, Margaret Atwood has been awarded the highly prestigious PEN Pinter Prize – awarded annually to to a writer who, in the words of Harold Pinter’s Nobel Literature Prize speech, casts an ‘unflinching, unswerving gaze upon the world’ and shows a ‘fierce intellectual determination…to define the real truth of our lives and […]

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The Birds at The Bluestocking Club this month

Daphne du Maurier’s The Birds was adapted for stage in 1963 by ‘master of suspense’ Alfred Hitchcock – his third Daphne du Maurier inspired film. This month we’re teaming up with The Bluestocking Club to celebrate the iconic book and film, with a special Halloween screening at Waterstones Tottenham Court Road on 30th October. As […]

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Fifty Shades . . . of Feminism

Everyone’s talking about Fifty Shades again this week.* We can only assume they’re celebrating our recent paperback release of Fifty Shades of Feminism, the seminal, eye-opening, downright essential collection of short takes on feminism today! Is being a woman all about submitting to desire?  There are many more shades than that . . . and here are fifty […]

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Read an extract from Darling Days

Her Chapter 1 Babygirl’s Gun  13 Third Avenue, New York City, 1982   She said he gave her the little gun because it was classy and elegant, like her. A feminine twist of metal and pearl. Lethal, like her. She kept it under her pillow “just in case.” Her bed was, is, and always will […]

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Start reading . . . Strangers on a Train

Read an extract from Patricia Highsmith’s iconic crime novel, Strangers on a Train.  The train tore along with an angry, irregular rhythm. It was having to stop at smaller and more frequent stations, where it would wait impatiently for a moment, then attack the prairie again. But progress was imperceptible. The prairie only undulated, like […]

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For green fingered Viragos . . .

The virtues of getting your hands dirty and growing something for yourself have long been extolled, but many of us just don’t know where to start. First published in 1995, The Virago Book of Women Gardeners is reissued this month in hardback.  Including gardening tips, inspiring ideas, and bold visions from writers including Stevie Smith, Edith Wharton and […]

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Enter the Stylist and Virago short story competition

This competition is now closed. Read the winning story here.    In October, we publish four of Daphne du Maurier’s short story collections in brand new Virago Modern Classic jackets, so to celebrate the queen of the gothic short story, we were very excited to announce a brand new short story competition with Stylist magazine. Visit the Stylist […]

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Our favourite Margaret Atwood books

To celebrate the publication of The Heart Goes Last in paperback, we asked the Virago team to tell us about some of their other favourite Margaret Atwood books…   About The Heart Goes Last: Stan and Charmaine are a married couple trying to stay afloat in the midst of economic and social collapse. Living in their […]

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Margaret Atwood introduces The Heart Goes Last

Margaret Atwood has been with Virago for nearly forty years and in that time we’ve published over thirty of her amazing books.  Welcome to the outrageous imagination of one of the greatest writers in the English language who hasn’t stopped surprising us yet! Lennie Goodings – Publisher, Virago  

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Books Beyond Borders

In light of recent events, we’re celebrating cultures outside of the UK that contribute to our diverse range of front list and Virago Modern Classic titles.   In Diamond Square, first published in 1962, is relatively unknown out of Spain, yet it is the most acclaimed Catalan novel of all time. Set in Barcelona during […]

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Our summer reading recommendations

Find out what the Virago team has been reading so far this year, and which books we are planning on packing in our suitcases this summer. I’ve been captivated by Susan Fletcher’s novel, Let Me Tell You About A Man I Knew. It’s a wonderfully atmospheric and moving read, filled with gorgeous descriptions of Provence in the south […]

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Lennie Goodings on Valley of the Dolls at fifty

Virago publisher, Lennie Goodings, shares her first experience of reading Jacqueline Susann’s multi-million best-selling book, Valley of the Dolls. I was 14 years old; a small-town, naïve Canadian girl. One of my friend’s parents had filled their small backyard with a new swimming pool and she invited a few of us over. We walked through […]

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Why you need to read the punchy, bold and urgent I Call Myself a Feminist

At the beginning of June, we published I Call Myself a Feminist in paperback. Punchy, bold and urgent, here’s why you need to read it:   ‘Full of spirit, candour and good sense . . . provocative in all kinds of ways’ Telegraph      ‘It’s a real joy to see young women taking up feminism in […]

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Incredible reviews for Love Like Salt

In March we published Love Like Salt, a beautifully lyrical, moving memoir by Helen Stevenson.   When she discovered that her baby daughter had cystic fibrosis, one of the most common incurable inherited diseases, Helen Stevenson stopped writing, feeling she needed every ounce of her strength to protect her child: ‘Some of it I did […]

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