From Jon Courtenay Grimwood, author of the celebrated Arabesk series, comes a stunningly inventive novel of futuristic noir set in a world of shifting realities. Here a man is drawn into a gritty postmodern subculture and a secret kingdom of otherworldly beings to find what he lost long ago: a reason to live.
Kit Nouveau figured he’d already come to the end of the world. An Iraqi war veteran, expatriate, and part owner of Pirate Mary’s, the best Irish bar in Tokyo, Kit had settled down to await the inevitable with barely a whimper. It wasn’t exactly how Kit thought he’d end up, and he was right.
It’s going to end up a lot worse.
A teenage runaway with fifteen million dollars in stolen cash and a taste for cosplay is about to save Kit’s life in a lethal swirl of scarlet and bridal lace. Lady Neku, a.k.a. Countess of High Strange, has her own dangerous destiny to fulfill and it’s mysteriously connected to Kit’s ravaged past. Now Kit’s only hope for redemption is to save an ex-girlfriend he tragically failed once before. But everyone says it’s already too late. And she’s left behind only one ominous clue: her suicide note.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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|Title of eBook: End of the World Blues|
|Release Date: 09-25-2007|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Random House Publishing Group|
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|Parent title||End of the World Blues|
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End of the World Blues
Friday, 15 August 2003
Later, Kit Nouveau was to realise that his world unravelled in Tokyo, six months after a cos-play stuffed large amounts of money into a locker that could be opened with a cheap screwdriver, had anyone known what it contained. Until then, he’d thought it ended fifteen years earlier, at 10.38 pm, on Friday, 15 August 2003, behind an old barn on the chalk hills above Middle Morton, a small town in Hampshire.
Who knew? Certainly not the nineteen-year-old squaddie leaning against the barn’s wooden wall. He’d come to the party with his latest girlfriend, a high-breasted Welsh girl called Amy who had a filthy laugh and, he hoped, filthy habits. Only she was inside sulking and the girl whose bandeau top he’d just undone was going out with someone else.
“Hey,” said Kit. “It’s okay.”
Pushing him away, the girl re-tied a ribbon. “No,” she said. “It’s not.” Mary O’Mally wore lipstick, black eyeliner, and bare legs under a frayed white miniskirt . . . Both makeup and attitude put on in a bus shelter roughly half way between her parents’ house and the barn. She’d cut her hair since Kit last saw her and had red highlights put in.
Under his own waxed jacket Kit wore a Switchblade Lies tee- shirt, with jeans and biker boots. His fair hair had been cropped and the faintest trace of a blond, very non-regulation goatee ghosted his chin.
Inside the hut someone took off Original Pirate Material and slung on Tight Smile, jacking up the volume.
“Wait,” said Kit, when Mary tried to say something. And the