by Simon Van Booy


This is an extraordinary book, 4 books in one, each quite distinct from the others. The story follows a group of friends, three lost souls who meet by chance in Athens and become inseparable, even by death. The story follows them through the years as their lives weave together, unravel, knit together again. All the characters are remarkably real; none of them are perfect, all have their share of everyday failings, all annoy and fascinate equally, all are truly human.

Everything Beautiful Began After is the most poetic, un-put-downable page-turner I think I’ve ever read. Often a book can be beautifully written, literary and gorgeous-of-language – and usually, such a book is a hard read, something to be taken in small doses. Other books are compulsively readable, so well-plotted you have to keep going long after you should have turned out the light and gone to bed, you have to find out what happens next. This book has both attributes in spades; an eminently readable thriller written in the language of a poet.

I can honestly say I’ve rarely read so remarkable a book.