Both a thrilling crime mystery and a dizzyingly unique novel of unparalleled ambition.
When a brutally murdered man is found hanging in a Covent Garden theatre, Detective Sergeant Rex King becomes obsessed with the case. But as Rex explores the crime scene further, he finds himself confronting his own secret history instead. Who, more importantly, is Rex King?
Moving from Holborn Police Station, to an abandoned village in rural 1980s France, and the Battle of the Beanfield at Stonehenge, The Fountain in the Forest explores a decisive moment in recent British social history through the lens of the French Revolutionary Calendar and reveals something extraordinary, in a profound yet playful meditation on liberty.
‘A gripping police procedural . . . impeccably Oulipian in conception and execution . . . Sets the author and his readers a bracingly high bar.’ David Collard TLS
‘White is always convivial company . . . His books [are] characterised by stylistic innovation, a feeling for place, a love of rogues and rebels.’ Sukhdev Sandhu GUARDIAN, ‘Book of the Day’
‘Fantastic . . . A cross between Derek Raymond and Raymond Queneau . . . It can be enjoyed at the level of a thriller, and yet it does all these other fascinating things . . . It’s such a good book.’ Andy Miller BACKLISTED PODCAST
‘That all these stylistic fireworks can illuminate several rich plot lines, each with multiple twists, which an attentive reader will enjoy disentangling, is the best vindication of experimental prose.’ Anna Aslanyan FINANCIAL TIMES
‘White lulls the reader into absorbed bewilderment before weaving the strands together with all the deftness of a seasoned crime writer . . . Enjoy it as a noir entertainment or as an evocative picture postcard from the past.’ Houman Barekat SPECTATOR
‘A detective thriller of unique calibre . . . intellectually stimulating, yet never elitist.’ HELSINKI BOOK REVIEW
‘A complex and twisting plot with a genuinely shocking and satisfying dénouement . . . An extraordinary novel where our sympathies are for a cop who as cop represents the very forces of repression the gut of the novel abhors . . . an astonishing achievement.’ Richard Marshall 3:AM MAGAZINE
‘The Fountain in the Forest is a mystery built on mysteries . . . It has heart and tenderness and leads us to the most unexpected places and at the centre of all this puzzling is a thriller with deep hooks.’ STORGY
‘A quite extraordinary combination of a controlled Oulipian literary construct, page-turning detective thriller, and politically-charged social history.’ THE MOOKSE AND THE GRIPES
‘A truly intriguing venture into the crime genre by the talented White . . . But there is more to the novel than the actual plot, as White unveils a series of literary challenges which throw the whole story a softball curve, while never slowing the plot down. Engaging and at the same time a challenge, this both a good read and a cheeky divertimento, and all rather unique.’ Maxim Jakubowski CRIME TIME
‘You could read the novel with no knowledge of OULIPO and enjoy it just as well . . . Anyone who enjoyed Keith Ridgway’s Hawthorn & Child or Nicholas Royle’s First Novel will love this book. Anyone who is into Ian Rankin or Denise Mina will love it, too . . . Above all, there is the joy inherent in a book well made: language expertly deployed, place wonderfully evoked, ideas, characters, memories, theories, political subtext brought vibrantly to life, a good story well told. Read, and enjoy.’ Nina Allan THE SPIDER’S HOUSE
3 January 2019 (14 Nivôse CCXXVII) | £8.99 paperback