It begins with a body. On a clear day in winter, the battered corpse of Crispin Salvador is pulled from the Hudson River taken from the world is the controversial lion of Philippine literature. Missing, too, is the only manuscript of his final book meant to rescue him from obscurity by exposing the corrupt roots of power behind the Filipino ruling families. His student, Miguel, investigates, journeying home from a city still in shock from terrorist attacks to a country caught between reckless decay and desperate progress. To understand his mentors death, Miguel scours the life, charting Salvadors trajectory via his poetry, stories, interviews, novels, and memoirs. The literary fragments become patterns become stories become epic: a generations-long saga of revolution, familial duty, political intrigue, and a peoples enduring struggle against their own worst tendencies. This is a clever, bravura, and exuberant debut novel from a new literary sensation. Brilliantly conceived, and stylishly executed, [Ilustrado] covers a large and tumultuous historical period with seemingly effortless skill. It is also ceaselessly entertaining, frequently raunchy, and effervescent with humour Judges of the Man Asian Literary Prize Miguel Syjucos dizzyingly energetic and inventive novel views his native Philippines with a merciless yet loving eye, its chorus of voices illuminating the many facets of this chaotic, complicated country. An ambitious and admirable debut. Janice Y. K. Lee, author of The Piano Teacher Vulnerable and mischievous, sophisticated and na

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