The Master and Margarita
Translated by Hugh Aplin
Russia’s literary world is shaken to its foundations when a mysterious gentleman – a professor of black magic – arrives in Moscow, accompanied by a bizarre retinue of servants. It soon becomes clear that he is the Devil himself, come to wreak havoc among the cultural elite of a disbelieving capital. But the Devil’s mission quickly becomes entangled with the fate of the Master – a man who has turned his back on his former life and taken refuge in a lunatic asylum – and his past lover, Margarita.
Both a satirical romp and a daring analysis of the nature of good and evil, innocence and guilt, The Master and Margarita is the crowning achievement of one of the greatest Russian writers of the twentieth century.
A wild surrealistic romp … Brilliantly flamboyant and outrageous.
Joyce Carol Oates
Bulgakov’s The Master and Margarita is a soaring, dazzling novel; an extraordinary fusion of wildly disparate elements. It is a concerto played simultaneously on the organ, the bagpipes and a pennywhistle, while someone sets off fireworks between the players’ feet.
The New York Times
A lasting fable about the human need for truth and the mysterious power of love.
It's rare that you read something so compelling and exciting. For me, The Master and Margarita is the most exciting work of imagination that I've ever read.
One of the great writers of the twentieth century.
One of the greatest modern Russian novels.
What I find most extraordinary about The Master and Margarita is its scale, its daring, its sheer imaginative reach. Part satire, part love story, part mystical experience, it refuses to be pigeonholed. It’s a book that makes other books look safe.
A gloriously ironic gothic masterpiece.
Born in Kiev in 1891 to Russian parents, Mikhail Bulgakov trained as a doctor and volunteered for the Red Cross on the outbreak of the First World War. He later enlisted as a doctor for the anti-Bolshevik White Army, before eventually giving up medicine to concentrate on literature. The Master and Margarita is his most famous work, and has been hailed as one of the greatest novels of the twentieth century.