Sunday, 11 January 2009
The Vesuvius Club
As you would expect from a member of the League of Gentlemen and one of the writers for the new series of Dr Who, this is an opulent romp. Lucifer Box is an Edwardian painter and spy whose office is based in a gentleman's lavatory underneath the Royal Academy of Art. Lucifer is an interesting, self-obsessed character, the opening chapters are peppered with asides about his pretty mouth and fine white hands. He's also very very naughty, with 'a girl with a name and the body of a goddess ... There'd been a balcony, starlight, whispered words and then something very cheeky in the rhododendrons' as well as with anyone else who takes his fancy. He lives at 9 Downing Street (someone has to and its "awfully handy for town"). The prose is superb, darkly funny and surreal and this is an entertaining read.