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Books

Things fall apart in Denis Johnson’s latest novel of madness and anarchy in Sierra Leone

Denis Johnson’s splendidly unreliable spy-narrator in The Laughing Monsters makes for an equally unpredictable, uproarious plot

28 March 2015

9:00 AM

28 March 2015

9:00 AM

The Laughing Monsters Denis Johnson

Harvill Secker, pp.240, £12.99

‘I’ve come back because I love the mess. Anarchy. Madness. Things falling apart.’ The lines belong to Roland Nair, one of the morally bankrupt spies who careers around Africa in Denis Johnson’s tenth novel, but they might equally well describe Johnson himself, a writer always happiest in his work when the wheels come off and the world breaks down.

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