Summary

The first novel written by Booker finalist Tom McCarthy-acclaimed author ofRemainderandC-Men in Spaceit is set in a Central Europe rapidly fragmenting after the fall of communism. It follows an oddball cast-dissolute bohemians, political refugees, a football referee, a disorientated police agent, and a stranded astronaut-as they chase a stolen painting from Sofia to Prague and onward. Planting the themes that McCarthy’s later works develop, here McCarthy questions the meaning of all kinds of space-physical, political, emotional, and metaphysical-as reflected in the characters’ various disconnections. What emerges is a vision of humanity adrift in history, and a world in a state of disintegration.

With an afterword by Simon Critchley, author ofThe Book of Dead Philosophers