A coming of age tale which extends the nature and boundaries of love, as seen through the eyes of the youthful and naive Melanie, The Magic Toyshop was enormously successful and cemented Angela Carter's status as one of England's greatest and most daring writers.
About the book
'This crazy world whirled around her, men and women dwarfed by toys and puppets, where even the birds are mechanical and the few human figures went masked... She was in the night once again, and the doll was herself.'
When tragedy strikes, young Melanie and her two siblings are forced to abandon their family home and sent to live in London with their aunt Margaret, a kindly and beautiful mute, and their abusive and highly manipulative uncle, Philip.
Standing on the cusp of womanhood and threatened by her perilous new surroundings, this classic gothic novel follows Melanie as she interacts with a host of colourful characters and becomes increasingly aware of her own morality and sexuality.
About the author
Angela Carter was born in 1940, in Sussex. She grew up in the shabbily respectable south London district of Balham, the second child of an eccentric journalist father and a neurotic housewife mother.
She studied English at Bristol University before travelling extensively, teaching and writing numerous best-selling novels. They have all received considerable critical acclaim and remain firm favourites of modern English literature.
Angela was a devout feminist throughout her life, wrote for Spare Rib magazine and voted Labour. Her novels are wholly reflective of her world views and continue to inspire new generations of men and women worldwide.
About the narrator
Fiona Shaw, CBE, is an Irish actress and opera director, best known for her role as Petunia Dursley in the Harry Potter films.
Having graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, Fiona has worked extensively with the Royal Shakespeare Company, as well as the National Theatre. Her most memorable stage credits include The Taming of the Shrew, Hedda Gabler, Medea, As You Like It and Les Liaisons Dangereuses. She has twice been awarded the prestigious Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actress for her performances in Electra and Machinal.