Boxer, Beetle: Book summary and reviews of Boxer, Beetle by Ned Beauman

Boxer, Beetle

A Novel

By Ned Beauman

Boxer, Beetle
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  • Published in USA  Aug 2011,
    256 pages.

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Book Summary

Kevin "Fishy" Broom has his nickname for a reason - a rare genetic condition that makes his sweat and other bodily excretions smell markedly like rotting fish. Consequently, he rarely ventures out of the London apartment where he deals online in Nazi memorabilia. But when Fishy stumbles upon a crime scene, he finds himself on the long-cold trail of a pair of small-time players in interwar British history. First, there's Philip Erskine, a fascist gentleman entomologist who dreams of breeding an indomitable beetle as tribute to Reich Chancellor Hitler's glory, all the while aspiring to arguably more sinister projects in human eugenics. And then there's Seth "Sinner" Roach, a homosexual Jewish boxer, nine-toed, runtish, brutish - but perfect in his way - who becomes an object of obsession for Erskine, professionally and most decidedly otherwise. What became of the boxer? What became of the beetle? And what will become of anyone who dares to unearth the answers?

First-time novelist Ned Beauman spins out a dazzling narrative across decades and continents, weaving his manic fiction through the back alleys of history. Boxer, Beetle is a remarkably assured, wildly enjoyable debut. Visit www.boxerbeetle.com.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Though Beauman bites off a lot to convincingly chew and fumbles the odd simile, his novel is irreverent, profane, and very funny." - Publishers Weekly

"[W]ill appeal to readers of offbeat fiction, especially those with an interest in the World War II era." - Library Journal

"Probably the most politically incorrect novel of the decade - as well as the funniest."-Sunday Telegraph

"Many first novels are judged promising. Boxer, Beetle arrives fully formed: original, exhilarating and hugely enjoyable." - Sunday Times

Shortlisted for the 2010 Guardian First Book Award
Shortlisted for the 2011 Desmond Elliott Prize

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Ned Beauman was born in 1985 and studied philosophy at Cambridge University. He has written for Dazed & Confused, AnOther Magazine, the Guardian, the Financial Times, and several other magazines and newspapers. He lives in London and is is at work on his second novel.

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