Their bisecting stories instead probe the knottier consequences of expats seeking escape in post colonial countries, with some rich commentary on privilege and trauma along the way.
A conman and fairly reprehensible deadshit, Connor’s seedy diver Dan persona is expertly calibrated to prey upon tourists and affluent, overly trusting women – women like Sasha. But it’s readily apparent that despite boasting slightly cleaner linen, the moneyed yoga retreat circles that Sasha finds herself in have plenty of dirt of their own.
As always Pieper’s prose is affable yet visceral, a trait shared by his memoir Feel Good Hit of the Year and 2016’s The Toymaker.
But there’s also a grim empathy to his writing, whether he’s flashing back to impoverished childhoods in a gentrifying New York and a crumbling, deindustrialising Newcastle, or surveying the present-day in an India where western interlopers running from their ‘first world problems’ can be both exploitative, and ripe for exploitation.
Author: Liam Pieper
Publisher: Hamish Hamilton