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With his first full novel in almost ten years (not counting his Doctor Who book), Michael Moorcock – the most influential figure in modern fantasy and science fiction – returns to the city of his birth. London has always been a central character in Moorcock’s work, from the high-literary fiction of MOTHER LONDON to the roof gardens of Jerry Cornelius.
Now return to London just after the war, a city desperately trying to get back on its feet. And one young boy, Michael Moorcock, who is about to discover a world of magic and wonder. Between his first tentative approaches to adulthood – a job on Fleet Street, the first stirrings of his interest in writing – and a chance encounter with a mysterious Carmelite Friar, we see a version of Moorcock’s life that is simultaneously a biography and a story. Mixing elements of his real life with his adventures in a parallel London peopled with highwaywomen, musketeers and magicians, this is Moorcock at his dazzling, mercurial best.
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Fizzes with idea and layers of meaning that transcend the comic-book plot. Bring on part two
Whispering Swarm is fantastically entertaining...Welcome back Mr Moorcock; nobody else quite has your style
merging autobiography and fantasy may not appeal to everyone...but I think it comes off because so much of a writer's life is conducted in his head and in books - his own, and other peoples...the whispering swarm is the contact internal murmuring made from books which demand to be made
The Sunday Telegraph
[in THE WHISPERING SWARM] the capital becomes a character, much as it did in Moorcock's 1988 masterpiece MOTHER LONDON
The Financial Times
a discursive book, with as many meditations of marriage, metaphysics, religion and science as there are rollicking sword fights
displaying as it does the full spectrum of Moorcock's idiosyncratic qualities...fusing the literary approach of MOTHER LONDON with the generic fun of his earlier work
Beautifully written and wonderfully descriptive
The resulting tale is enough to make you wish all writers would garland their memoirs with highway men and cavaliers and roundheads
Odd and compelling, rambling and intense, Moorcock guides us through the byways of his extraordinary mind and explores the sources of his fiction