How to Disappear: A Memoir for Misfits
WINNER OF THE 2012 PEN/ACKERLEY PRIZE A haunting memoir on the nature of belonging and the lure of escape. In this series of five brilliantly written and irrepressibly quirky travelogues, Duncan Fallowell sets out to odd corners of the world in pursuit of some extraordinary and improbable characters who were, in most cases, momentarily famous - or infamous - and then simply disappeared. From an out-of-season Gozo and a becalmed Indian hill-town; to a remote Scottish island, where a German artist vanished immediately after he had bought a large island in the Hebrides, and a Welsh fishing village, where Fallowell tracks down the model for Sebastian Flyte, the aristocratic anti-hero of Evelyn Waugh's Brideshead Revisited, How to Disappear winds through the eerie abyss that can open up between someone - or something - being both real and phantom. Written with a fierce intelligence and charmingly offbeat humour, How to Disappear is one of the most unusual 'autobiographies' - not to mention collection of travellers' tales - ever written.
Winner of PEN/Ackerley Prize 2012.
'Brilliant and haunting' -- Alan Hollinghurst Guardian 'Quirky, quixotic and glorious fun' -- Sebastian Shakespeare Tatler 'Vivid and highly pleasurable.' -- Toby Lichtig The Times Literary Supplement 'Magical, original and an unforgettable read' -- Richard Canning Independent 'Profundity, wit and joyful naughtiness' -- Christopher Silvester Daily Express 'A masterpiece of refined subversion' -- Stephen Bayley Financial Times 'Fallowell is a mischievous mixture of pagan saybarite and erudite aesthete' The Oldie 'A wonderful feat of writing and insight into our merciless, often beautiful world' -- Anthony Page, film and theatre director 'A book of the momentarily famous yet now often forgotten, this is an absorbing look into what happens when they leave the spotlight. It's poignant and often touching. This book will stay with you long after you have finished it.' -- Hannah Britt Daily Express 'Pick of the Paperbacks'
DUNCAN FALLOWELL is a novelist, travel writer and critic, whose best-known books include April Ashley's Odyssey, the biography of a transsexual, One Hot Summer in St Petersburg and Twentieth-Century Characters. He lives in London.