Author(s): Nicholas Rinaldi
A vivid and timely novel of life in Manhattan, by the author of The Jukebox Queen of Malta. Farro Fescu, concierge, janitor, general factotum, oversees the lives of the residents of Echo Terrace, collecting their mall, organising their taxis, fixing problems with their apartments. There is Nora Abernooth, who lives with a menagerie of birds, snakes and monkeys who provide much-needed company since the death of her husband. In the penthouse is Harry Falcon, multimillionaire and founder of the country's biggest frozen-food company, who is slowly dying of cancer. In the Harry Houdini suite is Dr Tattafruge, cosmetic surgeon to the stars and specialist in sex change operations. Maggie Sowle lives a quiet life in the Helen Keller apartment, sewing quilts that will hang in galleries around the world. Abdul Saad is a young Muslim making his way in the mortuary business, still living at home with his parents but dreaming of a better life and of the woman he loves. Karl Vogel sits in his apartment, surrounded by walls painted blue to remind him of the skies he used to fly through as a Luftwaffe ace back in the bad old days.