By Sam Leith
(Crown, Hardcover, 9780307716422, 288pp.)
Publication Date: February 7, 2012
List Price: $23.99*
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“A tremendous novel—droll, savvy, original. An invigorating blast of fiction.”
—William Boyd, Author of Any Human Heart and Restless.”
A hurricane sweeps off the Gulf of Mexico and, in the back country of Alabama, assembles a passenger jet out of old bean cans and junkyard waste. This piques the interest of the enigmatic Directorate of the Extremely Improbable. Their fascination with this random event sets into motion a madcap caper that will bring together a hilarious cast of characters, including: an eccentric mathematician, last heard of investigating the physics of free will; a lovelorn Cambridge postgraduate who has set off to America with a ring in his pocket and hope in his heart; and a member of the Directorate with no capacity for imagination. What ensues is a chaotic chase across a fully realized, hyper-real America, haunted by madness, murder, mistaken identity, and conspiracy. The Coincidence Engine is a lively, boisterous debut that heralds the arrival of a major new talent.
Sam Leith is a freelance writer and critic. A former Literary Editor of the Daily Telegraph, he now writes regularly for the Evening Standard, Guardian, Spectator, Wall Street Journal Europe and Prospect. He lives near North London's picturesque Suicide Bridge with his fiancée Alice, daughter Marlene and son Max. His cat is called Henry.