Exquisite Specimens

Novel by Paul West


'Exquisite Specimens' by Paul West

London 1970. Cambridge graduate Simon Francis embarks on a PhD programme where he spirals into a world of deceit and lies.

In his personal life, truth and reality are just as muddied: Simon is unable to form a lasting intimate relationship with a girl as her very proximity renders him nauseous and physically helpless. Sexually frustrated, he becomes immersed in fantasy.

Then he meets French au pair Yvonne. He is drawn to her and desperately wants to tick ‘losing his virginity’ off his ‘Things to Do’ list with her. But will his body stand the test? Have his fantasies made reality distasteful? As the net closes in on Simon in the academic arena, so it does too personally and he is forced to take drastic consequences…

‘A searingly honest and original talent’ Andrew Roberts, Historian & Journalist

‘I so enjoyed it I read it all in one sitting – an imaginative, funny and revealing novel’ Jonny Geller, Literary Agent

‘A stunning writing talent and a great sense of humour’ Louise Schweitzer, Literary Agent

‘quite wonderful’ Mark Stanton, Literary Agent

‘Exquisite Specimens is one of the most original novels I have read in a long time. Mordantly humorous, vividly descriptive and highly inventive, it also indicates a writing talent of a very high standard and makes it an eminently readable piece of work.’ Cornerstones Manuscript Agency

‘Exquisite Specimens has a unique and original voice and style. It made me think of The Rachel Papers meets Lolita meets Starter for Ten. It is a terrific read and wonderfully thought provoking.’ HHB Literary Agency

‘It’s very well done. You’ve nailed the voice, and you have complete control over your material.’ Andrew Kidd, Literary Agent

‘the tragicomedy is terrific’ Lucia Rae, Literary Agent

‘I have read it with great interest, enjoying your effortless prose and great characterisation.’ Karolina Sutton, Literary Agent

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