Lost for Words

Lost for Words

Book - 2014
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Each of the judges of the Elysian Prize for literature has a reason for accepting the job. For the chairman, MP Malcolm Craig, it is backbench boredom, media personality Jo Cross is on the hunt for a 'relevant' novel, and Oxbridge academic Vanessa Shaw is determined to discover good writing. But for Penny Feathers of the Foreign Office, it's all just getting in the way of writing her own thriller. Over the next few weeks they must read hundreds of submissions to find the best book of the year, and so the judges spar, cajole and bargain in order that their chosen title gets the recognition it deserves. Meanwhile, a host of authors are desperate for Elysian glory, including brilliant writer and serial heart-breaker Katherine Burns, lovelorn debut novelist Sam Black, and Sonny, convinced that his magnum opus, The Mulberry Elephant, will take the literary world by storm.
Publisher: London : Picador, 2014.
London, Picador,, 2014.
ISBN: 9780330454223
Characteristics: 260 p. ; 21 cm.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Dec 03, 2019

Witty and waspish novel about a literary prize from the author of the celebrated Patrick Melrose novels. Those books had their funny moments but much more emotional heft, something St. Aubyn isn't interested in here; it's more about the egos and insecurities of writers, who don't want to care about prizes but can't help it. Reminded me a bit of Kingsley Amis and David Lodge.

Bunny_Watson716 Dec 02, 2015

A light funny send-up of the world of literary prizes. Nothing too serious.

Dec 03, 2014

Witty characterization could not save this strange, haphazard story.

Sep 25, 2014

A fun read about a fictional literary award and the motley collection of judges, publishers and authors competing and conspiring for the honours. I was a bit disappointed and gave this three stars partly because St. Aubyn's other novels - especially the Patrick Melrose books - are so exceptional. Those books are difficult to read because of some of their subject matter, but amazing writing.

ser_library Jul 29, 2014

the joke paled after 50 pages

bdemian Jun 12, 2014

Hilarious and smart; biting satire of an incestuous literary scene, but with a big heart. An absolute delight.

Jun 11, 2014

'Lost for words he isn't'. Edward St Aubyn has written a brilliant send-up of the whole world of literary prizes .Absolutely hilarious.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at YPRL

To Top