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About the book
  • Published: 9 November 2000
  • ISBN: 9780141182872
  • Imprint: Peng. Mod. Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $22.99

Vile Bodies


Formats & editions


Evelyn Waugh's acidly funny and formally daring satire, Vile Bodies reveals the darkness and vulnerability that lurks beneath the glittering surface of the high life. This Penguin Modern Classics edition is edited with an introduction and notes by Richard Jacobs.
In the years following the First World War a new generation emerges, wistful and vulnerable beneath the glitter. The Bright Young Things of twenties' Mayfair, with their paradoxical mix of innocence and sophistication, exercise their inventive minds and vile bodies in every kind of capricious escapade - whether promiscuity, dancing, cocktail parties or sports cars. In a quest for treasure, a favourite party occupation, a vivid assortment of characters, among them the struggling writer Adam Fenwick-Symes and the glamorous, aristocratic Nina Blount, hunt fast and furiously for ever greater sensations and the fulfilment of unconscious desires.
If you enjoyed Vile Bodies, you might like Waugh's A Handful of Dust, also available in Penguin Modern Classics.
'The high point of the experimental, original Waugh'
Malcolm Bradbury, Sunday Times
'This brilliantly funny, anxious and resonant novel ... the difficult edgy guide to the turn of the decade'
Richard Jacobs
'It's Britain's Great Gatsby'
Stephen Fry, director of Vile Bodies film adaptation Bright Young Things

  • Pub date: 9 November 2000
  • ISBN: 9780141182872
  • Imprint: Peng. Mod. Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $22.99

About the Author

Evelyn Waugh

Evelyn Waugh was born in Hampstead, London, in 1903. He studied History at Hertford College, Oxford, but left without a degree. After a brief period as a teacher, he published his first book, a biography of the artist Dante Gabriel Rossetti, in 1928. The same year also saw the publication of his first novel, Decline and Fall, which established his reputation. Further novels, including Vile Bodies (1930), A Handful of Dust (1934) and Brideshead Revisited (1945) were highly acclaimed. Waugh also wrote several travel books and short stories, and was a prolific journalist and book reviewer. Waugh died on Easter Sunday, 1966, at his home in Combe Florey, Somerset.

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