The All True Adventures (and Rare Education) of the Daredevil Daniel Bones (Hardback)Owen Booth (author)
- 10+ in stock
Singularly thrilling and tantalisingly panoramic, Booth’s gloriously freewheeling picaresque novel hurtles across late nineteenth century Europe in the charismatic company of Captain Clarke B and the idealistic young Daniel Bones. Evocative, energetic and unputdownable, this is a rollicking adventure and pitch-perfect period pastiche.
A gloriously moving and entertaining, picaresque debut novel, about a young man's sentimental education in late 19th-Century Europe; inspired by a real historical figure: 'Captain' Paul Boyton - the 'Fearless Frogman'
The 1880s are drawing to a close, and 14(-maybe-15)-year-old Daniel Bones fears that the prospects for him and his younger brother Will may be dimming with the century.
For the motherless sons of a drunken blacksmith, life on a barren spit of land reaching into the Essex estuary holds little promise. Until one evening, from out of the water, there emerges the astonishing figure of Captain Clarke B: cigar-smoking daredevil adventurer, charlatan, casanova and inventor of the world-famous life-saving inflatable suit.
As the Captain embarks on his ramshackle promotional tour of Europe, Daniel is sucked into his wake, on an adventure that will carry him through the waterways of the continent, encountering Kings and Princesses, wealthy widows, irate husbands, anarchists, arms dealers and shadowy power-brokers. It's an education beyond Dan's wildest imaginings, across countries undergoing the convulsions of all kinds of revolution, and one that will open his eyes, and his heart.
But as he travels further into the dazzle of notoriety and the darkness that lies behind it, Dan's promise to return and rescue Will seems ever harder to keep. For in the Captain's world of smoke and mirrors it is all too easy to lose sight of who he is, or the man he ought to be...
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Number of pages: 352
Weight: 560 g
Dimensions: 240 x 159 x 33 mm
'A splendid, hilarious novel pulsating with adventure, romance, deception, princesses, anarchists and unexpected wildlife. Booth's brilliantly coloured, larger-than-life 19th century makes Jules Verne seem like old news.' - Will Wiles, author of Plume
Praise for What We're Teaching Our Sons:
'If you like the structure - setup, joke, setup, joke, setup, joke - then you'll love What We're Teaching Our Sons. If you don't, well, there's still plenty to occupy your attention, because the book is not just funny: there are tiny stories embedded throughout the endlessly repeated pattern, as if a Bridget Riley painting were populated between the lines with lots of Bruegel micro-portraits' - Ian Sansom, Guardian
'Max Porter's Grief is the Thing with Feathers and Matt Haig's How to be Human and Reasons to Stay Alive are contemporary counterpoints, but What We're Teaching Our Sons feels highly original in scope ... You start with a smile on your face and end with tears in your eyes. This is the way of this wonderful work' - Irish Times
'Booth pulls the rug out from under the novel form - not to mention a card-house of masculine archetypes - with tender, satirical, melancholy ease' - Joanna Walsh, author of Break.up
'I can't remember the last time I read a book that so frequently reduced me to tears of laughter and painful recognition ... one of the pleasures, beyond the wit and exuberance of the prose, is the joy of seeing a writer finding the absolutely perfect form for their work' - Luke Kennard, author of The Transition
'Formally bold, funny, sweetly sad and fiendishly clever, Booth finds, on the journey men take with their boys, a small, fertile, hitherto undiscovered island somewhere in the vast ocean between Donald Barthelme and Nick Hornby' - Will Ashon, author of Strange Labyrinth
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