A Witch!: Master and Margarita Readalong

This third week for The Master and the Margarita Readalong hosted by Alice, we're reading through Chapter 22, By Candlelight. Here we go.

Moscow Mayhem

More mayhem continues in this week's reading. The money given away at the magic show turns into paper, causing problems for taxi drivers all over Moscow. It also leads to the arrest of the theatre's accountant. Women are left in their underwear when the clothes they picked out at the show disappear. Busloads of office workers are driven to the mental hospital, when they can't stop singing Soviet working songs.

The headless editor's uncle starts thinking that the Moscow apartment is his, as an heir I guess, and travels from the apparently terrible Kiev to lay claim to it. Uncle Maximilian is told by Behemoth, the cat, that he better scram. He books it out of there, but pauses to see what's about to happen to a man also looking for No. 50. This poor old barman, cheated by the fake money taken as payment for booze, is hoping Woland will straighten out his financial situation. A naked woman in an apron opens the door, which gives him a start. Woland and the rest of his entourage then spook the old guy when they inform him he will die in 9 months from liver cancer so he better not worry about it.

The devil's followers are the best part of this book so far. The inhabitants of No. 50 remind me of the people living in Dr Frank-n-furter's castle in The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

And like when I watch The Rocky Horror I have no idea what is going on. (Why is Meatloaf even there?) It's still a pretty good time though.

Finally, a Margarita

Margarita arrives on the scene. She's been moping around her big house, worrying her maid, but this day she has "a feeling." She takes a walk to Alexander Gardens and is distracted by the funeral parade of the editor. Rumour has it that his head went missing. Woland's man Azazello appears and tells her "a foreign gentleman" wants to meet her. She's offended, as she thinks this is a come on, but gets excited when he tells what's she's been thinking, of her lover of course, and that he has news of the Master.

Before she can meet the man himself, she has to wait until 8:30 and then slather herself with special cream given to her by Azazello. The time comes and the cream, just like the ads say, take ten years off her haggard 30 year old face.

And then you might as well be dead
It also gives her new vim and vigor. Oh and also she can fly on a broom now. She has a great time flying around Moscow- naked and invisible. She stops to completely destroy, with a sledgehammer, the apartment of the publisher that ruined the Master's life. Very Revenge of her!

Peace out, Moscow!
She hops back on her broom and there beside her is her maid Natasha riding a pig, who used to be her neighbour. She's a witch now. And it turns out Margarita is the Queen of the Witches. She finds this out at the Burning Man festival happening in the woods attended by all the witches. When the party wraps up, she's taken to Woland's apartment by a crow driving a flying car. You know, normal not-mushroom induced stuff.

Margarita meets Woland while he's lying in bed. He asks her to host a special ball he is throwing. He throws it every year and the hostess must always be a Margarita and a native of the place. How convenient. Margarita agrees. I'm not sure how this will involve the Master, but it guess it will somehow.

I hope there will be dancing
So. Margarita arrived. No Jesus this week. Margarita has really taken to being Queen of the Witches. It's nice to see her out of the house and doing her own thing. I think I into the groove of this novel now.


  1. OMG I hadn't thought of the devil' minions being like all the people in RHPS but YESSSS and now I'm going to picture that for the rest of the book. I could see Behemoth busting out the Time Warp

  2. Oh damn, I hadn't even thought about the devil and his minions living in their own version of the Rocky Horror Picture Show but that is the truest thing I've ever heard in this life. PROPS. I am anticipating now that Satan's ball of which Margarita is the hostess (WHY NOT) will be much like the plot of that incomprehensible-ass movie.

  3. Yep, you are completely right. Now I'm going to read about the ball and sing the Time Warp over and over! Woland can be Dr. F.

  4. I know everyone is commenting on this, but "The inhabitants of No. 50 remind me of the people living in Dr Frank-n-furter's castle in The Rocky Horror Picture Show." YES such a good observation, ermg.


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