The Rise And Fall Of Great Powers
by Tom Rachman
WHO IS TOOLY ZYLBERBERG? 9-year-old Tooly is living in Bangkok, largely left to her own devices, when she is spirited away by a seductive group of outsiders who take her from city to city across the globe. At 20, she is wandering the streets of Manhattan with a scribbled-on map, living with a ping-pong-playing, avocado-loving Russian emigre called Humphrey and scamming strangers for her shadowy protector, Venn. Now, aged 31, she runs a second-hand bookshop on the Welsh borders and has found a kind of peace with her strange upbringing - until she gets a message from an old flame asking her to come back to New York to see her dying father. Tooly has spent so much of her life becoming what others want her to be, she has lost all sense of herself. Warm, hilarious, moving and fizzing with intelligence, THE RISE AND FALL OF GREAT POWERS is a masterpiece about the search for identity, the people who rise into and fall out of our lives, and how to figure out what home means.
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