Illustrated by Quentin Blake
With witty illustrations by Quentin Blake, Waugh’s satiric novel on the perils of modernisation receives the Folio Collectable treatment.
The third novel by master satirist Evelyn Waugh chronicles the efforts of Seth, the Oxford-educated emperor of the fictional nation of Azania, to modernise his country. His subjects are reluctant and corruption is rife but, with the assistance of the feckless Basil Seal as his Minister of Modernisation, Seth is determined that his nation will adopt the ‘civilised’ ways of the West. Farcical and outrageous, Waugh’s biting comedy was inspired by his travels as a journalist around Europe and Africa in the 1930s.
‘Not only outrageous, but also outrageously funny’
This edition features 19 black and white integrated illustrations by acclaimed illustrator Quentin Blake, as well as a frontispiece giving centre stage to Seth and his maps. With a keen eye for the absurd, Blake’s restless pen wittily captures the denizens and the details of Azania. As Emperor Seth settles into his new office, he requests that a Victory Medal be made in honour of his coming to power – a medal with his image emblazoned upon it. His portrait is to be ‘copied from the photograph taken in Oxford. You understand – it is to be modern, European – top hat, spectacles, evening dress collar and tie.’ This striking image is featured on the vibrant binding of this Folio Collectables edition.
‘A comic novel, a novel of absurdities, conducted in a farcical world of double-cross and double-double-cross’
Courtesy of BBD&P Awards
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Review by omawdsley on 23rd Jun 2016
"This was my first Folio Collectable, and I was interested to see whether they were worth acquiring. The story is funny and engaging - if a little dated at times - the illustrations are wonderfully mis..." [read more]