Part novel, part daydream, part diatribe, Hadrian the Seventh tells the story of George Arthur Rose, a poor, frustrated writer who lives in a shabby bedsit, saving his cigarette ends and living off soup – until one day he is made Pope.
As the first English pontiff in five centuries, he is a mass of contradictions: infallible and petulant, humble and despotic. Yet this book is really a knowing self-portrait of its flamboyant author Baron Corvo, a would-be priest with aristocratic pretensions, and one of the greatest eccentrics of English literature.
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Trouble at the Vatican
‘How very Corvine of you,’ I purred to the witty author who had just made a remark as savage as it was exquisitely expressed. His eyes widened in surprise, then took on a gleam of approval. In an...Read more