“A rollicking black comedy…” The Australian
“A finely-tuned comic touch” The Sun Herald
“A romp through the life of a literary desperado” Newtown Review of Books
“Once in a while a first novel comes along that literally knocks your socks off….” Juanita Kees
This is Ian Shadwell’s debut novel. A black comedy. Very black. It follows the fortunes of Michael Ardenne, a character with Emma Bovary’s vanity, Ignatius J Reilly’s tact and the thirst of Sebastian Dangerfield. Michael is a Booker prize winner, but that was fourteen years ago. Now the money has gone, the ideas have dried up and the debtors are knocking on the door. If he doesn’t give his publishers a new manuscript very soon, he will lose everything. But it’s hard to be creative with no money for wine. Even worse, his wife thinks he should get a job. There’s only one alternative – steal. A brilliant manuscript he discovered in his publisher’s slush pile. He rewrites it as his own and publishes, to great acclaim. Fame, fortune and easy sex await. Bar one important detail. The man who really wrote the book has just found out and he’s not happy, not very happy at all….