This entertaining book, by the young British novelist Ned Beauman, struck me as a v bold, energetic bit of writing, & the similes/descriptions are firework-esque. The story itself, which careers from Berlin to Paris to the Los Angeles of the 1930s is winningly free of constraints, which is fun but which makes it a somewhat messy read, a triumph of style over structure. That said, I ended up racing enthusiastically through it & laughing loads, as often as not at the sheer abandon of it. But the 1st half was much stronger for me than the second, where I started to feel that I was losing the central character’s voice – and, essentially, for all that at times it recalls the delightful barminess of Wodehouse or the mischief of early Martin Amis, it’s not quite my type of thing. Clever, witty, self-indulgent, free-wheeling, often a bit tiresome, but often sparking. Definitely worth a read, but insubstantial in the long run.
New York state of mind
6 hours ago