The Necessary Angel

C. K. Stead

RRP: £8.99

2 August 2018

Published by Allen & Unwin

ISBN: 9781760631161

RRP: £15.99

1 February 2018

Published by Allen & Unwin

ISBN: 9781760631154

RRP: £8.99

1 February 2018

Published by Allen & Unwin

ISBN: 9781760638238

Max Jackson, a New Zealander living and lecturing in Paris, has a complicated arrangement with his estranged French wife, Louise. In love with his younger Sorbonne colleague Sylvie, he finds himself entangled with Helen, a troubled young English student.

When a Cezanne painting goes missing from Louise’s apartment, the boundaries he has struggled to maintain threaten to collapse.

Infused with literary musings and the spirit of Paris, The Necessary Angel is as much an ode to the power of literature as a nuanced exploration of love, fidelity and the balance of power within relationships.


Excellent . . . [a] fictional gemDavid Grylls
Sunday Times

C.K. Stead is challenging, fun, urbane and brilliant... Read him.John de Falbe

A languid yet gripping portrayal of modern literary life in Europe.
Good Reading magazine

[Stead] has the ability to set the scene in a few pithy lines and condense more telling details into a handful of pages than many writers manage in their entire chapters
Sunday Times

A gifted and intelligent novelist

[a] masterfully structured storyZoe Apostolides
Financial Times

Paris suits Stead. There is a joie de vivre to the writing
NZ Listener

There is no finer author writing in New Zealand today [...] admire the artistry of a writer at the very top of his game.Gerri Kimber
Katherine Mansfield Society Journal

The novel crackles with the expected wit and erudition of Stead... Stead riffs with language, playing with words as he searches for le mot juste. The result is amusing and intoxicating

The novel reaches a climax which is surprising and unusual but apt. It is an enjoyable book, worldly and detached in tone, ruminative and amused, sophisticated without being pretentious. Stead captures the essence of Paris, its certainties and its contradictions, while simultaneously invoking the power of literature to alter and direct lives.Richard Hopton
Country & Townhouse Magazine

A few chapters in, I found myself in the grip of an artist with the ability to capture mood and beauty in a sentence
Financial Times on RISK

fine, thoughtful and insightful
Daily Mail on RISK

An elegant and assured novel
Scotsman on RISK

Written with glowing simplicity and rich in delicate humour...[A] thought-provoking, witty and highly topical novelJames Wood
Daily Telegraph on MY NAME WAS JUDAS

[An] elegant, calm novel...Stead maintains an eye unblinkingly opposed to the transcendental