'Every artist is an unhappy lover. And unhappy lovers want to tell their story.'Ex-tax collector and author of two unpopular novels, Bradley Pearson wishes to devote his retirement to writing a masterpiece. But the doorbell and the phone keep ringing, and every ring brings with it an ex-wife, a friend in need, a sister in trouble or a young woman seeking a teacher, and so dusty, selfish Bradley is plunged into the muddles and mysteries which will end in his doom.Winner of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize 1973. WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY SOPHIE HANNAH VINTAGE CLASSICS MURDOCH: Funny, subversive, fearless and fiercely intelligent, Iris Murdoch was one of the great writers of the twentieth century. To celebrate her centenary Vintage Classics presents special editions of her greatest and most timeless novels.