‘Fiercely intelligent, very funny and unlike anything else I’ve ever read’ MARK HADDON
'Original...witty...playful…a wonderfully funny book' JAMES WOOD
'A triumph – a genuinely new story, a genuinely new form' A. S. BYATT
Eleven-year-old Ludo is in search of a father. Raised singlehandedly by his mother Sibylla, Ludo’s been reading Greek, Arabic, Japanese and a little Hebrew since the age of four; but reading Homer in the original whilst riding the Circle Line on the London Underground isn’t enough to satisfy the boy’s boundless curiosity. Is he a genius? A real-life child prodigy? He’s grown up watching Seven Samurai on a hypnotising loop – his mother’s strategy to give him not one but seven male role models. And yet Ludo remains obsessed with the one thing his mother refuses to tell him: his real father’s name. Let loose on London, Ludo sets out on a secret quest to find the last samurai – the father he never knew.
"Her style is brilliantly heartless, and cork-dry; original herself, she is a witty examiner of human and cultural eccentricity. She is, above all, playful… What grounds all DeWitt’s brilliance and game-playing is the way that she dramatizes a certain kind of hyperintelligent rationalism and probes its irregular distribution of blindness and insight…a wonderfully funny book, but comedy dances near the abyss; the apprehension of humor’s frailty links DeWitt to the tragicomic tradition of Cervantes, Sterne, and Nabokov"
"A bold, brilliant book…original both in content and form… DeWitt’s zeal cannot fail to enchant"
"An exhilaratingly literate and playful first novel by a fresh, electrifying talent. DeWitt goes to the top of the class...her adventurousness spins out on an epic scale"