There is something about Lux. He's a thief and a liar; he is selfish and self-absorbed and hopelessly vain. But while he looks like Lana Turner and romances like a true Casanova, Lux is actually more like a bumbling, oblivious Mary Tyler Moore.
Amid shouting mobs, police shields, and the hurled bricks of the '80s Brixton riots, Lux is searching for Pearl--the love of his life. Her home has been burned down by a stray petrol bomb, and she's searching for sanctuary along with her friend Nicky. Nicky is traumatized after having killed her computer--her best friend--and is herself being followed by Happy Science PLC. It is their plan to breed a superior next generation by implanting the sperm of genius men inside beautiful women. She knows too much about the plan. Lux is helped in his quest by Kalia, a castaway of Heaven attempting to get back in God's good graces by performing one million good deeds over countless lifetimes. There's also a thrash metal band, a riot-party, past lives, and KY. Lots of KY.
British novelist Millar offers up another nutty slice of interconnected lives in this tale of a lovelorn poet's quest for love. As London's Brixton riot rages, Lux, a 17-year-old vagabond poet waiting for fame to find him, dodges fire bombs, police and an awful thrash metal band as he searches for Pearl, who he is in love with, though she doesn't care for him all that much. She's fleeing the melee with her lesbian lover Nicky, who suspects her bosses at Happy Science are scheming to artificially inseminate her. Meanwhile, Kalia, an expelled angel trying to work her way back into heaven, moves through the ages performing good deeds as devil incarnate Johnny seeks to undo them. Their converging stories, minced together in a quick, Spartan prose, offer laughs and, finally, some touching insights into life's trajectory. (May)
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Soft Skull Press
April 30, 2009
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