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The English Assassin: A Romance of Entropy

The English Assassin: A Romance of Entropy is a 1972 novel by British fantasy and science fiction writer Michael Moorcock, first published in the UK by Allison & Busby and in the US by Harper & Row.[1] Subtitled "A romance of entropy" it was the third part of his long-running Jerry Cornelius series.[2]

The English Assassin
English assassin.jpg
Dust-jacket from the first edition
AuthorMichael Moorcock
Cover artistRichard Glyn Jones
CountryUnited Kingdom
SeriesJerry Cornelius
GenreLiterary fiction
PublisherAllison & Busby
Publication date
Media typePrint (Hardback)
Pages254 pp
LC ClassPZ4.M8185 En3 PR6063.O59
Preceded byA Cure for Cancer 
Followed byThe Condition of Muzak 

Cornelius is the "English Assassin" of the title, although he spends much of the book near death himself. Darker in tone than other volumes in the series, the novel offers eight alternative catastrophes in a world of chaos and barbarous collapse. The usual glittering array of supporting characters such as the anarchist Una Persson, the occasionally evil Miss Brunner, Professor Hira and the grotesque Bishop Beesley make their appearances amid the rubble of swinging London with the rest of Jerry's colourful clan—his blousy mother, villainous brother Frank and the doomed angelic Catherine.


Joanna Russ described the novel as "less vividly raw" but "sadder, stranger, more crafted, sometimes more beautiful, and far more complex" than the series' opening volume.[3]


  1. ^ "The English Assassin" at Amazon.
  2. ^ "The English Assassin" at Complete Review.
  3. ^ "Books," F&SF, April 1975, p. 66.