The Pianoplayers

by Anthony Burgess

Edited by Will Carr

The Pianoplayers

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-2234-6
  • Pages: 256
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £20.00
  • Published Date: July 2017
  • BIC Category: Literature & literary studies / General, Fiction & related items / Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945), Literature & literary studies / Literary studies: fiction, novelists & prose writers, LITERARY CRITICISM / European / English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh, FICTION / Literary, FICTION / Humorous, Biography, Literature & Literary studies, Literature
  • Series: The Irwell Edition of the Works of Anthony Burgess


This novel is one of Anthony Burgess's most accessible and entertaining works. By turns bawdy, raucous, tender and bittersweet, and full of music and songs, this is a warm and affectionate portrait of the working-class Lancashire of the 1920s and 1930s that he knew from his own early life.

The Pianoplayers is a funny, moving, autobiographical novel that brings to life the world of silent cinemas and music-halls of 1920s Manchester and Blackpool. Fully annotated and with a new introduction, this is an authoritative text for a new generation of readers.

Part of the forthcoming Irwell Edition of the Works of Anthony Burgess, this book offers an opportunity to reappraise an unjustly neglected novel important to our understanding of Burgess's wider oeuvre. The 2017 Burgess centenary makes this a key moment for reflection on the life and work of a major figure in twentieth century letters.


'He has hit on a brilliant theme, low and heroic at the same time.'
Norman Shrapnel, Guardian

'Part autobiography, part joyous invention, it combines picaresque at its best with comedy of high subtlety and poetry ... A major novel by a major novelist.'
Financial Times

'Anthony Burgess is one of the most versatile artists of the English language.'
Erica Jong, Washington Post


The Pianoplayers
1 Anthony Burgess, 'An American Organ'
2 Reviews


Will Carr is Deputy Director of the International Anthony Burgess Foundation

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