From a bold new voice in British comic fiction, a hilarious story of a middle-aged man who drops everything to move to the wilds of Scotland—discovering both a strange breed of capitalism and the redemptive power of nature.
Claypole is not “a large man.” He is a fat man. A fat man with thin limbs, like an egg with tentacles. And life is not going well. He’s alone, idle, and on the brink of a medical crisis when a childhood acquaintance makes him an offer he can’t understand, can’t talk about, but ultimately can’t refuse.
A week later, he finds himself in rural Scotland, plunged into an eccentric community at war over a wind farm. Claypole is supposed to be a backer, but he has no idea what side he’s on, even though it may earn him a lot of money. All he wants is to look like a hero in front of the woman with the bright blue eyes who brought him here. To do so he must run the gauntlet of a family with many dark secrets, some dangerous hippies and their hallucinogenic potions, and the wilderness itself with all its threats and dangers.
Whirligig is a raucous, joyous, often poignant comedy about the redemptive power of the countryside. Written with wit and an intuitive sense of pace and focus, it’s a timeless classic about how—or how not—to turn your life around.
Magnus Macintyre grew up in suburban Oxford and rural Argyll, and then studied history at Jesus College, Cambridge. He has been a serial entrepreneur in UK magazine publishing, film, television, and wind farming, with varying degrees of success. Only once has he had a proper job, as managing director of the New Statesman. He now lives in Somerset with his wife, Lucie, and their two children, and writes full time. Whirligig is his first novel.