The Bookseller Pick of the Week | Pick: Best New Crime Fiction, The Spectator
When an artist is invited to the funeral in Cyprus of his old college teacher and mentor, Francis Benthem, little does he realise that the strange circumstances of the burial service will be the prologue to a bizarre and alarming series of events. Summoned to the secluded estate of the mysterious, rich Russian expatriate Postrakov, who had arranged the funeral, he learns that Benthem had been working for him and he is now offered the same post. With debts undermining his relationship with his girlfriend in London, he accepts, and moves in to the converted water-tower which had been Benthem’s studio and home. Here, his every move watched, his job is to paint the widowed Russian’s dreams, but he becomes increasingly aware of disturbing, even criminal, undercurrents, somehow involving the influential local bar-owner Furkan and creepy local drug-dealer Stelly, as well as the enigmatic Prostakov and his entourage. Gradually the unsettling secrets of the past and the identity of the mysterious Golden Orphans will emerge, but not before the artist has found himself in mortal danger.
Moving between the small-town, tourist-trap bars, a secluded rural estate and finally the abandoned, war-damaged district of Famagusta, Gary Raymond’s gripping novel thrusts the reader deep into the complex past and present life of the divided island.
'Intense, unnerving and brilliant.'
Jeff Noon, The Spectator
'Shades of The Talented Mr Ripley.'
'A gripping, enigmatic thriller.'
The Western Mail
'Packed with the detail, characterisation and flair of a doorstop-sized literary thriller.'