Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2010, Paul Murray's Skippy Dies is a tragicomic masterpiece about growing up and learning about life in a Dublin boarding school.
Ruprecht Van Doren is an overweight genius whose hobbies include very difficult maths and the Search of Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence. Daniel 'Skippy' Juster is his roommate. In the grand old Dublin institution that is Seabrook College for Boys, nobody pays either of them much attention. But when Skippy falls for Lori, the frisbee-playing siren from the girls' school next door, suddenly all kinds of people take an interest - including Carl, part-time drug-dealer and official school psychopath. . .
A tragic comedy of epic sweep and dimension, Skippy Dies scours the corners of the human heart and wrings every drop of pathos, humour and hopelessness out of life, love, Robert Graves, mermaids, M-theory, and everything in between.
'That rare thing, a comic epic. . . Murray is a brilliant comic writer, but also humane and touching, and he captures the misery and elation, joy and anxiety of teenage life' David Nicholls, Guardian
'A triumph. . . brimful of wit and narrative energy' Sunday Times
Irish writer Paul Murray has received much critical attention since the publication of his first novel Sunday Times
'Glorious, a very funny novel...Skippy Dies overflows with wonderful writing and incisive imagery'
'My book of the year is Skippy Dies by Paul Murray: a marvel of tone and sensibility. It's a coming of age tale, set in a grim boarding school, and a love story, and also a murder mystery; it's a truly, deeply alive book, and the funniest I've read in years. I believe that this book would have made James Joyce laugh out loud'
Daniel Swift, New Statesman