At a run-down brothel in Caudal, Spain, the prostitutes are collecting stray dogs. Each is named after a famous male writer: Dante, Chaucer, Bret Easton Ellis. When a john is cruel, the dogs are fed rotten meat. To the east, in Barcelona, an unflappable teenage girl is endeavouring to trace the peculiarities of her life back to one woman: Alba Cambó, writer of violent short stories, who left Caudal as a girl and never went back.
Mordantly funny, dryly sensual, written with a staggering lightness of touch, the debut novel in English by Swedish sensation Lina Wolff is a black and Bolaño-esque take on the limitations of love in a dog-eat-dog world.
Praise for Bret Easton Ellis and the Other Dogs
- ‘Wolff’s prose has a quality of “otherness” entirely in keeping with the surreal atmosphere of the novel. This strange, provocative debut sits well alongside the work of Roxane Gay, Katherine Angel, Maggie Nelson, Zoe Pilger and Miranda July . . . a cool, clever and fierce addition to the canon of modern feminist literature.’ Sarah Perry, The Guardian
- ‘[A] filmic offering . . . channelling the spirit of Pedro Almodóvar. A thoroughly invigorating novel.’ Lucy Scholes, The Independent
- ‘Curious . . . Wolff effortlessly embeds . . . stories within a story to create a disorienting but thought-provoking whole’ Big Issue North
- ‘Wolff has had enough of the big swinging dicks of masculine literature. [Bret Easton Ellis and the Other Dogs is] clever and challenging and distinctive.’ Galen O’Hanlon, The Skinny
- ‘Oddly compelling…a European postmodern novel steeped in alienation and ennui.’ Library Journal
- ‘The author demonstrates a marvellous command of language and creates characters with real depth, lending the book a sensual vibe and an acerbic wit that force its emotional truths to rise above the grunge of its hard-boiled setting. A poetic, unsentimental drama that offers a meditation on love in all its disparate forms.’ Kirkus Reviews
- ‘The reason this book haunts and horrifies and challenges us so much is that it strays so widely, and so wildly, from any fixed structure or approach . . . Wolff’s dark vision of how our world now operates is a disturbing, but deeply compelling, one.’ Numero Cinq
- ‘Wolff manoeuvres with great skill through her breathtaking multitude of worlds and an equally impressive cast of characters. Bret Easton Ellis . . . takes the reader on a roller-coaster from the tragic to the comical, with hints of the mysterious and magical scattered in between – it is a testimonial of a dead person remarkably full of life.’ The Bookbag, 5 Stars, January Book of the Month
- ‘A vivid adventure. Enlightening, engrossing, tender and dark, Bret Easton Ellis and the Other Dogs leaves you with a myriad of moments you won’t easily forget.’ European Literature Network
- ‘Disarming and refreshing. Bret Easton Ellis and The Other Dogs is a highly unusual and haunting read.’ The Lonesome Reader
- ‘Bret Easton Ellis and the Other Dogs is a clever, thoughtful novel whilst also being a really interesting, well-told, engaging story (or set of intertwined stories). If you prefer your literature European filtered through Latin America with an occasional kick of dark humour, Bret Easton Ellis and the Other Dogs is the one for you.’ The Writes of Women
- ‘A beautifully written, intricately plotted novel. Eminently quotable, it draws the reader in thanks to Wolff’s ability to create warm and distinctive voices for her characters. The book never follows the paths you would expect as a reader, and while the text is rich and detailed, there is nothing extraneous . . . A uniquely crafted piece of literature.’ The Workshy Fop
- ‘A book that you just want to give people and say: take a look at this, read it, experience it. I would have liked to devote the entire review to quoting sentences and paragraphs from the novel – it is almost as if that were the only way of adequately conveying the gravity, depth and lightness of Lina Wolff’s prose, her tender yet pitiless character descriptions, her distinctive but also natural way of piecing together the novel’s disparate parts into a shimmering whole.’ Eva Johansson, Svenska Dagbladet
- ‘The images are crisp as starched linens and as sharp as thorns.’ Minor Literatures
- Read more about Lina Wolff in our authors’ section.
- Read extracts in The Guardian and Words Without Borders.
- Lina Wolff’s short story Maurice Echegaray appears in the February 2016 issue of The White Review.
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