Headlong

Michael Frayn
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ISBN 9780571283484 Format Paperback
Published 03/05/2012 Length 400 pages

About Book

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize

Headlong begins when Martin Clay, a young would-be art historian, believes he has discovered a missing masterpiece. The owner of the painting is oblivious to its potential and asks Martin to help him sell it, leaving Martin with the chance of a lifetime: if he could only separate the painter from its owner, he would be able to perform a great public service, to make his professional reputation, perhaps even rather a lot of money as well. But is the painting really what Martin believes it to be? As Martin is drawn further into this moral and intellectual labyrinth, events start to spiral out of control . . .

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Whitbread Novel Award and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction, Headlong is an ingeniously comic thriller that follows a young philosophy lectuerer's obsessive race through the art world in search of an elusive masterpiece. Michael Frayn's other novels include Spies, which won the Whitbread Best Novel award, and Skios, which was longlisted for the Booker Prize.

  • About Michael Frayn

    Michael Frayn was born in London in 1933 and began his career as a journalist on the Guardian and the Observer. His novels include Towards the End of the Morning, Headlong, Spies and Skios. His seventeen plays range from Noises Off, recently chosen as one of the nation's three favourite plays, to Copenhagen, which won the 1998 Evening Standard Award for Best Play of the Year and the 2000 Tony Award for Best Play. He is married to the writer Claire Tomalin.

    Photo credit: Ekko von Schwichow

    Watch

    Watch Michael Frayn's Guardian interview here 

    Watch Michael Frayn on how he wrote Skios here 

    Watch Michael Frayn's Guardian Book Club discussion on Spies here 

    Read

    Michael Frayn's Paris Review interview on the art of the theatre here  

    Praise

    'The most delightful, sophisticated novel: Michael Frayn is probably England's funniest writer.' New York Times on Towards the End of the Morning

    'As brilliant as all Michael Frayn's work.' P.G. Wodehouse on The Tin Men

    'Frayn has never written more seductively and surely than in this book.' Sunday Times on Spies

    'Fans of [Frayn's] fabulously metaphysical farce will laugh themselves sick at this novel ... Frayn can't write a sentence without making you giggle but when he's in full comic flow he's a miracle of nature.' Daily Express on Skios

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