Pardon Me: A Victorian Farce by James Roberts

There are several kinds of reader who will absolutely delight in this book. One is the kind who loves a sex romp a la Benny Hill, all innuendoes and awkward hilarity. Another is the kind who loves British/European/South African history of the Victorian era, particularly as the basis for a bit of speculative historical fiction (think Forrest Gump,) with one knowing eye to modern sensibilities. But most of all, this book will appeal to the kind of reader who enjoys a smart, funny but ultimately and surprisingly sweet tale of a young man trying to find his way at the turn of the 20th century. Reminiscent of a historically advanced Candide, tho without as much heavy-handed philosophizing, Pardon Me is an occasionally grotesque but ultimately fulfilling Anglo-centric comedy of sex, drugs and politics.

Disclaimer: James Roberts offered a copy of Pardon Me to the Frumious Consortium staff for review. After a death match that may or may not have involved stilettos of both kinds and copious amounts of tears and drunken promises, I emerged the victor and got to read Pardon Me first, whee!

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