Faber celebrates William Golding’s work with the launch of new editions

Faber is embarking on a major relaunch of William Golding’s novels to celebrate these radical modern classics by a visionary Nobel laureate and Booker winner.

The first three titles – The Inheritors, Pincher Martin and The Spire – will be released in October 2021 to coincide with the Nobel Prize, with new forewords by Ben Okri, Marlon James and Benjamin Myers respectively. Other confirmed introducers include Kate Mosse, Annie Proulx, Nicola Barker, Bettany Hughes, Helen Castor and Stephen King.

The £9.99 B-format paperbacks will be repackaged in tranches, following the first three novels: Lord of the Flies, Darkness Visible and The Double Tongue will be released in January 2022; Rites of Passage, Close Quarters and Fire Down Below (To the Ends of the Earth: A Sea Trilogy) in April; Free Fall and The Scorpion God in July; and The Pyramid and The Paper Men in November.

Faber’s Creative Director Donna Payne has designed a bold reconceptualisation of Golding’s novels revealed today. She commissioned illustrator Bill Bragg to create dramatic new artwork, with branding signalling the author’s totemic cultural status.

The reissues will be promoted with a special event at the Cheltenham Literature Festival on 13 October.

Golding’s work has been translated into a total of forty-four languages across the world. Recently, his multi-million-selling modern classic Lord of the Flies has been sold into new languages for the first time, including Armenian, Indonesian, Kazakh, Malay, Mongolian and Thai.

Faber Audio Editor Catherine Daly has also commissioned new unabridged recordings of Pincher Martin (read by Julian Sands) and The Inheritors (read by David Dawson) to join the existing recording of The Spire, read by Benedict Cumberbatch.

Provocative, profound, disturbing, Golding is an essential moral and literary companion to the twentieth century. And now, in our own dystopian age, his insights into humanity, nature, warfare, religion, civilisation and history couldn’t be more urgent. This striking new aesthetic and these fantastic introducers will celebrate Golding as a trailblazing thinker and stylist, encouraging new generations to read beyond his iconic Lord of the Flies as well as reconnecting with his millions of devoted fans.

Publisher Alex Bowler and Editor Ella Griffiths

We are delighted that Faber is relaunching the work of William Golding. We are particularly pleased that the emphasis is on novels he wrote after Lord of the Flies, many of which are still more radical and innovatory than their celebrated predecessor. Golding’s portrayal of human frailty as well as his prescient awareness of environmental destruction are all too relevant today.

William Golding Limited

William Golding (1911–1993) was born in Cornwall and educated at Marlborough Grammar School and Brasenose College, Oxford. Before becoming a writer, he was an actor, small-boat sailor, musician and schoolteacher. In 1940 he joined the Royal Navy and took part in the D-Day operation and liberation of Holland. Lord of the Flies, his first novel, was rejected by several publishers but rescued from the ‘reject pile’ at Faber and published in 1954. It became a modern classic, selling millions of copies, and was translated into forty-four languages and made into a film by Peter Brook in 1963. Golding wrote eleven other novels, a play and two essay collections. He won the Booker Prize for Rites of Passage in 1980 and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1983. He was knighted in 1988 and died in 1993. www.william-golding.co.uk

7 October 2021

Pincher Martin – Foreword by Marlon James

The Spire – Foreword by Ben Myers

The Inheritors – Foreword by Ben Okri

6th January 2022

Darkness Visible – Foreword by Nicola Barker

Lord of the Flies – Foreword by Stephen King

Double Tongue – Foreword by Bettany Hughes

7th April 2022

A Sea Trilogy:

Rites of Passage – Foreword by Annie Proulx

Close Quarters – Foreword by Helen Castor

Fire Down Below – Foreword by Kate Mosse

Further new editions with forewords to be announced

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