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Spoils - Brian Van Reet

Spoils - Brian Van Reet

This is № 78 of an exclusive edition of only 250 copies

Title: Spoils

Author:  Brian Van Reet

ISBN:  9781910702963

Weight:  743 g

Numbered and signed first edition, first printing



Last 1 in stock, fast dispatch

Our price:  £27.50

Spoils by Brian Van Reet

It is the spring of 2003 and coalition forces are advancing on Iraq.  Images of a giant statue of Saddam Hussein crashing to the ground in Baghdad are being beamed to news channels around the world.  Nineteen-year-old Specialist Cassandra Wigheard, on her first deployment since joining the US army two years earlier, is primed for war.

For Abu al-Hool, a jihadist since the days of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, war is wearing thin.  Two decades of fighting – and the new wave of super-radicalised fighters joining the ranks in the wake of the September 11 attacks – have left him questioning his commitment to the struggle.

When Cassandra is taken prisoner by al-Hool’s mujahideen brotherhood, both fighters will find their loyalties tested to the very limits.

This fast-paced, hard-hitting account of eight weeks in the lives of a soldier and her captor forces us to reconsider the simplistic narratives of war spun by those in power.  With its privileged insight into the reality of armed combat, Spoils shines a light on the uncertainty, fear and idealism that characterised the early days of one of the most important conflicts of our time.

Peer & Press Reviews

Clear, authentic and beautifully written, Spoils is a book about war for people who don’t like books about war.  Van Reet gives us a thriller that is not a thriller, but a grave and fierce description of the moral battlefield behind the headlines from Iraq.

Anne Enright

Van Reet’s lean prose accommodates a laconic style suggesting military reports and detail-rich context fed by a keen eye and memory.  He embeds the reader with the unwashed troops in a cramped Humvee, in a dark cell where only screams penetrate, and in the mind of a Muslim fighter with two decades of campaigning, a dead son, a lost wife, scant wins, and more doubts than faith can ease.  A fine piece of writing that should stand in the front ranks of recent war novels.

Kirkus (starred review)

Moving immediately into the pantheon of first-rate war novels, Spoils reads like a nightmare within a tragedy, a story that is both touchingly classic and brutally modern.  This is a definitive record of the war that marked the end of the American Empire.  One of the best novels of our time in the Middle East.

Philipp Meyer, author of American Rust

Bibliographic Info

Attribute Details
Title: Spoils
Book Features
Edition / printing: First edition, first printing
Edition background:

This numbered edition of just 250 copies was commissioned by a leading London bookshop working in association with the publisher.

Each book has a tipped-in authentication page, directly before the title page, that confirms the book’s handwritten number.  This page also gives the title, the author’s name, the name of the publisher and the month / year of publication.

This exclusive edition’s distinctive black sprayed page edges single it out from the standard trade edition.

Book number: 78 of 250
Overall condition: Fine / Fine (see our article on Condition Grades)
Signed: On the number authentication page
Book Stats
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Imprint: Jonathan Cape
Publication date:
Printed by: Clays Ltd, Bungay
ISBN 13: 9781910702963
ISBN 10: 191070296X
Format: Hardcover with dust jacket
Pages: 255
Size (h x w x d): 242 x 162 x 30mm
Design Credits
Author photograph: Peter Tsai
Jacket design: Suzanne Dean
Jacket photograph: Burning Butterfly 4 by Mat Collishaw (All rights Reserved DACS 2016)

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