With only six months to live, Charlie Fairburn decides to write a novel. Whilst visiting a casino he meets a woman as addicted to gambling as he is to writing. Passionately entangled with her she becomes his nemesis as the story moves to its startling end
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'St Aubyn's attention to detail and comic dialogue make this a must-read' The Times
Charlie Fairburn, successful screenwriter, ex-husband and absent father, has been given six months to live. As he heads for the south of France, he resolves to stake half his fortune on a couple of turns of the roulette wheel and, to his agent's disgust, to write a novel - about consciousness. In the casino, he meets his muse.
Ricocheting helplessly from writing to passion to isolation in the desert, Charlie attempts to achieve some measure of understanding before he dies. And as his remaining days diminish along with his stash of gambling chips, his search for 'the flash of freedom at the heart of things' reveals a man ever more witty, thoughtful, and mordantly surprising.
'Striking metaphors and resonant evocations of sea and desert . . . accomplished reflections on the possibility of selfhood and the insolubility of consciousness' Sunday Times
'Playful and lingeringly witty . . . Tantalizing' Evening Standard