The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov

This is one of my favourite books and work of fiction in any language. A magical book. Master and Margarita works on so many levels, from farce to comedy, satire, comedy and tragedy.

The story has many layers to it. We see demons playing havoc in communist Russia and we also get to see the story of Pontius Pilot who meets a certain Yeshua Ha-Nozri or Jesus Christ as it may well be. One of the demons tells the tale of proving his existence to a couple of Moscow atheists, we get to see the ruthlessness and vanity of intellectuals, we see a fat talking demon cat. It shows the best and worst of people of which the demons take full advantage of. I could go on more about it, how sane men are seen as mad, how individuals suddenly show up thousands of miles of way, how there’s a party where the worst type of people in history are invited.

We also get to follow the story of the Master and Margarita themselves showing their love for one another and what they would do for each other,  we see much more than that. Even the demons themselves have their soft sides and you begin to like them as well. With the probable exception of the Master and maybe Homeless (who bares witness to the most change in the story) the demons take advantage of the sins of the people they come across.

I have happily read this book a dozen times, even going as far as reading different English versions of it from different translators. Which ever one you get to read you will not be dissapointed. I fell in love with it.

There is an audio book version of it on Audible narrated by Julian Rhind-Tutt which is a marvellous narration of the story. He talks with the right tone and nuance for each character.

If you haven’t done so already read this book. Beg for a copy, buy one, borrow one, listen to the audio book. I wouldn’t go as far as stealing the book. Even the demon Behemoth in the story would rather pay for his ride instead of not paying.