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This is a highly unorthodox detective novel, the detective being Xavier Lombard, hero of Leclere's earlier 'The Lost Son'. Like that book, this is a deeply serious and passionate book, following an uneducated and yet seductive character (the subject of Lombard's investigation), written in today’s blunt vernacular and yet concerned with big moral questions. It is also a literary novel that will still appeal to readers of crime. While The Lost Son adhered more strictly to the 'genre', this breaks from it and veers into the territory mapped out by Camus. But while Camus' prose is minimalistic and deadpan, the language here is electric and full of the music of London in the early 21st century. It's the sometimes joyful song of a desperate man on his last legs in London's hot and dirty streets. Fantastic.