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- Publisher: Faber Finds
- Format: Paperback | 312 pages
- Dimensions: 124mm x 196mm x 22mm | 322g
- Publication date: 24 July 2012
- Publication City/Country: London
- ISBN 10: 0571294685
- ISBN 13: 9780571294688
- Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
- Sales rank: 1,301,582
'Christopher's house stood out on its cliff like stages of lunar madness. It was the night of the first storm, not of winter, but of that week before winter which is the last warning to all creatures to dig themselves in...' Christopher Barocco is a self-made man of considerable means who decrees the building of a house in his image, to be carved out of a wild and treacherous Californian hillside in the Sierra Nevada valleys. However, as those who are drawn into his grand design soon discover, Barocco is also a man with a shadowy past; and the house is not destined to be a place where he will find peace but, rather, a catalyst for passion, violence, and death. First published in 1956, "The Self-Enchanted" was David Stacton's third novel. "A Gothic extravaganza...[Stacton] seems to participate with so much fervour in the fantasies he describes". ("Times Literary Supplement").
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David Stacton (1923-1968) was born Lionel Kingsley Evans in San Francisco. He attended Stanford University before serving in the Civilian Public Service as a conscientious objector during World War II, eventually graduating from the University of California at Berkeley in 1951. Stacton went to Europe after college and ended up staying, in his words, 'because I liked it and because I could not get my books in print in America.' His first novel, Dolores, was published in England in 1954. Among the wide-ranging historical and biographical novels for which he would become best known are Remember Me, about Ludwig of Bavaria; On a Balcony, about Nefertiti and Pharaoh Akhenaten; Segaki, set in feudal Japan; A Signal Victory, about the Spanish conquest of the Yucatan; Old Acquaintance, set at a film festival and telling of the loves of a star resembling Marlene Dietrich; and People of the Book, set during the Thirty Years' War. In 1968 he moved to Fredensborg, Denmark, but ten days later he was found dead in his new home. He was forty-four years old.