In the small African republic of Kinjanja, British diplomat Morgan Leafy bumbles heavily through his job. His love of women, his fondness for drink, and his loathing for the country prove formidable obstacles on his road to any kind of success. But when he becomes an operative in Operation Kingpin and is charged with monitoring the front runner in Kinjanjayes'>#8217;s national elections, Morgan senses an opportunity to achieve real professional recognition and, more importantly, reassignment.After he finds himself being blackmailed, diagnosed with a venereal disease, attempting bribery, and confounded with a dead body, Morgan realizes that very little is going according to plan.From the Trade Paperback edition.
On Brazzaville Beach, on the edge of Africa, Hope Clearwater examines the complex circumstances that brought her there. Sifting the details for evidence of her own innocence or guilt, she tells her story with a blunt and beguiling honesty that not only intrigues and disturbs but is also completely enthralling.
"Rich in character and incident, An Ice-Cream War fulfills the ambition of the historical novel at its best." --The New York Times Book Review Booker Prize Finalist "Boyd has more than fulfilled the bright promise of [his] first novel. . . . He is capable not only of some very funny satire but also of seriousness and compassion." --Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times 1914. In a hotel room in German East Africa, American farmer Walter Smith dreams of Theodore Roosevelt. As he sleeps, a railway passenger swats at flies, regretting her decision to return to the Dark Continent--and to her husband. On a faraway English riverbank, a jealous Felix Cobb watches his brother swim, and curses his sister-in-law-to-be. And in the background of the world's daily chatter: rumors of an Anglo-German conflict, the likes of which no one has ever seen.
In An Ice-Cream War, William Boyd brilliantly evokes the private dramas of a generation upswept by the winds of war. After his German neighbor burns his crops--with an apology and a smile--Walter Smith takes up arms on behalf of Great Britain. And when Felix's brother marches off to defend British East Africa, he pursues, against his better judgment, a forbidden love affair. As the sons of the world match wits and weapons on a continent thousands of miles from home, desperation makes bedfellows of enemies and traitors of friends and family. By turns comic and quietly wise, An Ie-Cream War deftly renders lives capsized by violence, chance, and the irrepressible human capacity for love.
"Funny, assured, and cleanly, expansively told, a seriocomic romp. Boyd gives us studies of people caught in the side pockets of calamity and dramatizes their plights with humor, detail and grit." --Harper's "Boyd has crafted a quiet, seamless prose in which story and characters flow effortlessly out of a fertile imagination. . . . The reader emerges deeply moved." --Newsday From the Trade Paperback edition.
All Henderson Dores dreams of is fitting in. But America, land of the loony millionaire and the subway poet, down-home Bible-basher and sharp-suited hood, of paralysing personal frankness and surreally fantasized facilities, is hard enough for an Englishman to fit in to. Henderson could never shed enough inhibitions to become just another weirdo.
Sixteen masterpieces of short fiction from one of today's most original storytellers. Wide-ranging in style and subject matter, the collection moves from 19th century Russia to Second World War Los Angeles to modern-day Eastbourne. First published in Penguin in 2005 to great acclaim, now reissued with a striking new cover image.