21 February 2014

The UK cover from Glenn O’Neill &co at William Heinemann here in the UK. Which is, like the previous cover for Angelmaker, just drop dead gorgeous.

This is a slightly different book from the first two, and the design reflects that. You’ll still feel the continuity from my other books, but at the same time there are, y’know. Shades and tints. Not everything is primary colours, not all problems can be solved with a magic beehive.

Which is not to say that you shouldn’t try.

Tigerman jacket design


Lester Ferris, sergeant of the British Army, is a good man in need of a rest. He’s spent a lot of his life being shot at, and Afghanistan was the last stop on his road to exhaustion. He has no family, he’s nearly forty and burned out and about to be retired.

The island of Mancreu is the ideal place for Lester to serve out his time. It’s a former British colony in legal limbo, soon to be destroyed because of its very special version of toxic pollution – a down-at-heel, mildly larcenous backwater. Of course, that also makes Mancreu perfect for shady business, hence the Black Fleet of illicit ships lurking in the bay: listening stations, offshore hospitals, money laundering operations, drug factories and deniable torture centres. None of which should be a problem, because Lester’s brief is to sit tight and turn a blind eye.

But Lester Ferris has made a friend: a brilliant, Internet-addled street kid with a comicbook fixation who will need a home when the island dies – who might, Lester hopes, become an adopted son. Now, as Mancreu’s small society tumbles into violence, the boy needs Lester to be more than just an observer.

In the name of paternal love, Lester Ferris will do almost anything. And he’s a soldier with a knack for bad places: “almost anything” could be a very great deal – even becoming some sort of hero. But this is Mancreu, and everything here is upside down. Just exactly what sort of hero will the boy need?


  • zach said on February 21st, 2014:

    I’ve read the synop before, but I just realized that I’m 40 and tired too. Can’t wait Nick. The cover…is just awesome…do you put your copy under the pillow at night?

  • Christine K. said on February 21st, 2014:

    I’m so excited I could die!!! ;) I love this! It’s beautiful! Wow… I can’t wait to read this one too! :)

  • Foz Meadows said on February 21st, 2014:


  • Joel Ward said on February 22nd, 2014:

    Hoping there may be some signings – will you post if there are, please? Me and my wife are very excited; can’t wait to read it. Probably have to buy two copies…

  • Nick Harkaway said on February 25th, 2014:

    There will be, I’m sure – I’m at Hay and Edinburgh already, and I suspect I’ll be at bookshops too. When I know, I’ll post here etc.

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