a piece of work

a piece of work

A remarkably difficult, malicious, unpleasant, or objectionable person. Boy, our new boss is a real piece of work. Remind me to stay out of her way! I hear Amy's boyfriend is a piece of work.
See also: of, piece, work
References in classic literature ?
I want you, Bolter,' said Fagin, leaning over the table, 'to do a piece of work for me, my dear, that needs great care and caution.
Voyt had gone back on Thursday, and he now, to settle on the spot the question of a piece of work begun at his place, had rushed down for a few hours in anticipation of the usual collective move for the week's end.
Yet what a piece of work a man makes of his first "pop.
Monsieur Rabourdin pleased him highly whenever he asked him to stay half an hour longer to finish a piece of work.
As to the painter, I can tell you nothing; but, if half the stories told of it be true, not one of the great Italian masters has ever produced so marvellous a piece of work as that before you.
What pleased me most in this affair," the Assistant went on, talking slowly, "is that it makes such an excellent starting-point for a piece of work which I've felt must be taken in hand - that is, the clearing out of this country of all the foreign political spies, police, and that sort of - of - dogs.
That puppet yonder," thought Mother Rigby, still with her eyes fixed on the scarecrow, "is too good a piece of work to stand all summer in a corn-patch, frightening away the crows and blackbirds.