As a child Ludo is plucked out of the shantytown where he was born and transported to a world of languid, cosseted luxury. Now twenty-seven, he works high above the above the sprawling metropolis of São Paulo for a vacuous 'communications company'. But this is not his world, and this is not a simple rags-to-riches story: Ludo's destiny moves him around like a chess piece, showing him both extremities of opulent excess and abject poverty, taking him to the brink of madness and brutality.
By the author of The Amnesia Clinic and winner of the Somerset Maugham Award.
Fast-paced with ingenious and constant twists, brilliantly sharp... an unsettling and magically compelling read
Merits the epithet Dickensian in a number of ways: In its generous anger at injustice and inequality, its attention to the lives of the poor, and its relish for food... But, as with Dickens, you don't read this for the plot, but for the power of the writing, the descriptions that fizz off the page, and the lust for life
The writing is exemplary: you feel the hand of a natural at work
Scudamore has the superb novelist's gift for giving vivid, sympathetic life to even second string characters, as well as his main ones; he also has the extraordinary power of summoning an entire brooding, smoggy city to life. Most of all, he has the ability to take on the heaviest of themes with the lightest and most compelling of touches, and leave you with an appetite for more