Sophie and the Sibyl
Berlin, September 1872. The Duncker brothers, Max and Wolfgang, own a thriving publishing business in the city. Clever, irresponsible Max is as fond of gambling and brothels as the older, wiser, Wolfgang is of making a profit. When Max's bad habits get out of hand, Wolfgang sends him to the Spa town of Homburg, to dance attendance upon a celebrity author - the enigmatic Sibyl, also known as George Eliot. As enthralling and intelligent as her books, she soon has Max bewitched.
The Strange Case of the Composer and his Judge
New Year’s Day, 2000. Hunters on their way home through a forest in the Jura stumble upon a half-circle of dead bodies lying in the freshly fallen snow. A nearby holiday chalet contains the debris of a seemingly ordinary Christmas: champagne, decorations, presents for the dead children. The hunters are questioned and sent away. As they descend the mountain, a large dark car rises past them in the gloom. The woman within barely acknowledges their presence.
Miss Webster and Chérif
Elizabeth Webster is a cantankerous spinster pushing 70. Forced out of her old school teaching job, she unleashes her sharp tongue and dogmatic opinions on everyone in the English village of Little Blessington. Then one cold spring night, sitting on the sofa alone, she grinds to a dead halt. To recover from this mysterious, near-fatal illness her doctor sends her on a journey to a North African country where she ventures into the desert and has a brush with terrorism. .
Seven Tales of Sex and Death
Illuminating the dark side of the erotic, these interwoven stories explore obsession, violence, and the thin line between sex and death. Under a Mediterranean sun a man searches for the Temple of Zeus as his wife awaits her stalker; a sex worker at an illegal fetish club contemplates her options; a strike spirals out of control with eerie consequences; and a conflict with noisy neighbours reaches theatrical heights.
The Deadly Space Between
Toby Hawk is a solitary boy in a family of Amazons. His mother, only fifteen years older than him, is a painter on the brink of commercial success. His great-aunt is a wealthy textile designer; her partner, Liberty, a barrister. Meanwhile, eighteen-year-old Toby's world remains a small, closed round of school, domesticity and surfing the Net at night. But everything changes when his mother takes up with a fascinating but enigmatic scientist, Roehm. Patricia Duncker's gripping novel is a disturbing tale of Oedipal passion. It is also an eerie psychological ghost story in the European tradition, whose sources - Freud, Faust and Frankenstein - haunt the pages.
James Miranda Barry
At the turn of the nineteenth century, ten-year-old James Miranda Barry enrolled as a medical student in Edinburgh, the start of a glorious career as a military surgeon. Across the Empire, Barry achieved fame not only as a brilliant physician, but also a legendary duellist and a celebrated social figure. But James Miranda Barry was also a woman. Her greatest achievement of all had been to 'pass' for a man for more than fifty years.
Monsieur Shoushana's Lemon Trees
This collection of stories is united by the themes of pleasure, passion, jealousy and revenge. Duncker creates worlds where the apparently innocent are not harmless and no-one ever turns out to be exactly what they seem. In The Arrival Matters the extraordinary novella which crowns the collection the characters play out a sinister and atmospheric end game of a mysterious and supernatural history of love. Elsewhere, a jealous husband pursues his adulterous wife through the streets of Paris, a forbidden book subverts an authoritarian state, a TV crew get considerably more than they bargained for, and a lesbian community in uproar is described with wry humour and tenderness.
In this ravishing tale of sexual and textual obsession, the young unnamed narrator sets forth from Cambridge on a quest. He is to rescue the subject of his doctoral research, Paul Michel, the brilliant but mad writer, from incarceration in a mental institution in France. What ensues is a drama of terrible intimacy and tenderness played out one hot and humid summer in Paris and in the south of France. Hallucinating Foucault is a literary thriller that explores with consummate mastery the passionate relationship between reader and writer, between the factual and the fictional, between sanity and madness. In blurring these boundaries, Patricia Duncker has written a novel of astonishing power and beauty.
Anthologies and Edited Books
Including several anthologies from Honno Press in Wales
Writing on the Wall
This is a book about writing and reading. For Patricia Duncker, the art of reading remains central to her writing, and in this wide-ranging collection of essays she draws together her most urgent themes and concerns. With an emphasis on reading and sexuality that echoes concerns of contemporary literary theory, Duncker engages in a critical dialogue with the classics that haunt her own work and offers a meditation on the complexity of sexual politics and the process of writing itself.
Sisters and Strangers
Sisters and Strangers: An Introduction to Contemporary Feminist Fiction Since 1970 the women's movement has produced a rich and varied harvest of feminist fiction. New writers have produced work that is politically cogent as well as technically innovative. This book introduces the reader to these women and to the politics and polemic that inform their writing. The author considers the relationship between feminist fiction and women's writing, using recent developments in feminist literary criticism to direct her discussion.
All Rights Reserved. Patricia Duncker 2019