From Publishers Weekly
Straightforward explanations and linear plotting are in short supply in this stand-alone novel; rather, Grimwood's latest tale reads as if Kurt Vonnegut were writing manga for the producers of Doctor Who
. The story starts in near-future Tokyo, where expatriate soldier Kit Nouveau runs an Irish bar. A runaway teenage girl, Lady Neku, hides $15 million in a train station locker and then tidily kills a mugger to save Kit's life, and soon both are deeply enmeshed in multi-layered clan wars. Kit's involves a reputed yakuza syndicate, various British police and spy agencies and several of his past and present lovers. Neku's concerns the alternate reality where she's a semi-immortal princess and the incipient bride to the heir of a rival family. The connections between the two are often vague, but Grimwood (Stamping Butterflies
) stabilizes the story with uniformly compelling characterizations and vivid settings. Genre fans may find the book difficult to label, but readers with flexible expectations will find it easy to enjoy. (Oct.)
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“Fast yet humane, hip yet bizarre, futuristic yet embedded in the absolute present moment of the world, Jon Courtenay Grimwood’s novels read like thrillers but maintain a kind of caring irony and clarity of political vision which not only make him one of the best of the new U.K. SF writers but suggest new directions for every kind of writing.”—M. John Harrison, author of Light
“Defiantly individual, and works in that interesting margin where myth, futurism, literature and pop culture all interbreed.” —Times
“Grimwood's latest tale reads as if Kurt Vonnegut were writing manga for the producers of Doctor Who