On a night of roiling mists and long shadows, in a corner of the city where only the most foolhardy will deign to tread, a rather disreputable actor meets his end in a most bizarre and terrible fashion. Baffled, the police turn once again in the direction of Edward Moon—who will always welcome such assignments as an escape from ennui. And, in fact, he leads the officers to a murderer rather quickly. Perhaps too quickly. For these are strange, strange times in England, with the strangest of sorts prowling London's dank underbelly: sinister circus performers, freakishly deformed prostitutes, sadistic grown killers in schoolboy attire, a human fly, a man who lives backwards. And nothing is precisely as it seems.
Which should be no surprise to Moon, whose life and livelihood consists entirely of the illusionary, the unexpected, the seemingly impossible. Yet what is to follow will shatter his increasingly tenuous grasp on reality—as death follows death follows death in the dastardly pursuit of poetry, freedom, utopia . . . and Love, Love, Love, and Love.
This was a most excellent read. I didn't like the ending much, and would have loved to learn more about the character the book was titled after, but overall, a most interesting read. I really loved the world Barnes set up here, with all it's intriguing eccentricities. It wandered into magical realism in places, which was a fun jaunt, and I particularly loved the with the narrator (not to give too much away, I hope!). The ending was rather odd and I didn't like it much, but overall the book was an interesting read and really well written!