Longlisted 2012 MAN Booker Prize
A story of mislaid identity, misdirected passion and miscalculated consequences, from the master of farce Michael Frayn.
On the sunlit Greek island of Skios, the Fred Toppler Foundation's annual lecture is to be given by Dr Norman Wilfred, the world-famous authority on the scientific organisation of science. He turns out to be surprisingly young and charming -- not at all the intimidating figure they had been expecting. The Foundation's guests are soon eating out of his hand. So, even sooner, is Nikki, the attractive and efficient organiser. Description Meanwhile, in a remote villa at the other end of the island, Nikki's old school-friend Georgie waits for the notorious chancer she has rashly agreed to go on holiday with, and who has only too characteristically failed to turn up. Trapped in the villa with her, by an unfortunate chain of misadventure, is a balding old gent called Dr Norman Wilfred, who has lost his whereabouts, his luggage, his temper and increasingly all normal sense of reality -- everything he possesses apart from the flyblown text of a well-travelled lecture on the scientific organisation of science...
About the Author
Michael Frayn was born in London in 1933 and began his career as a journalist on the Guardian and the Observer. He is the author of ten novels, including the bestselling Headlong, which was a New York Times Editors' Choice selection and a Booker Prize finalist, and Spies, which received the Whitbread Fiction Award. He has also written a memoir, My Father's Fortune, and fifteen plays, among them Noises Off and Copenhagen, which won three Tony Awards. He lives just south of London with his wife, writer Claire Tomalin.
Reviewed by 2 customers
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Comments about Skios:
Lights out can drag on with this one and then you put it down and realize that their are people out there living in this sought of extravagance which to me is somewhat disheartening in such an unbalanced world.
Comments about Skios:
I read Michael Frayn's 'Headlong' (thats a book you should search out)& on that positive experience bought this title. Skios is clunky in the way it is plotted but the story idea is intriguing which is what got me in. Pity Frayn doesn't pull it off. This is about as sohisticated as Agatha Christie. It reads like a first draft. Its improbable, highly contrived & the coincidences are laughable they're so unlikely. I did read it to the end but was annoyed that I didn't ditch it sooner. Its without doubt the worst book I've read this year.Its gone to the second hand book shop. I couldn't lend it to anyone else. I'd feel too guilty.
"A witty Rube Goldberg construction of a novel... Think "Being There" set to the staccato pacing of "Noises Off", and hold on to your funny bones."--"Library Journal"
Number Of Pages: 288
Published: 3rd May 2012
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.3 x 2.1
Weight (kg): 0.39
Edition Number: 1