Vintage, Paperback, 9780679744825, 160pp.
Publication Date: September 28, 1993
Stoyo Petkanov, the deposed Party leader, is placed on trial for crimes that range from corruption to political murder. Petkanov's guilt -- and the righteousness of his opponents -- would seem to be self-evident. But, as brilliantly imagined by Barnes, the trial of this cunning and unrepentant dictator illuminates the shadowy frontier between the rusted myths of the Communist past and a capitalist future in which everything is up for grabs.
"Barnes's novels have a mesmeric charm and an air of dangerous simplicity .... [He is] an exceptionally accomplished and ingenious stylist."
-- The New York Review of Books
"Gripping ... Barnes relates this compelling story with his usual narrative brio, sketching his characters with the broad, colorful strokes of a mythic allegory."
-- The New York Times
"Barnes is a dazzling mind in mercurial flight."
-- Philadelphia Inquirer