Babayaga
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Babayaga

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Description

Will is a young American ad executive in Paris. Except his agency is a front for the CIA. It’s 1959 and the cold war is going strong. But Will doesn’t think he’s a warrior—he’s just a good-hearted Detroit ad guy who can’t seem to figure out Parisian girls. Zoya is a beautiful young woman wandering les boulevards, sad-eyed, coming off a bad breakup. In fact, she impaled her ex on a spike. Zoya, it turns out, has been a beautiful young woman for hundreds of years; she and her far more traditionally witchy-looking companion, Elga, have been thriving unnoticed in the bloody froth of Europe’s wars. Inspector Vidot is a hardworking Paris police detective who cherishes quiet nights at home. But when he follows a lead from a grisly murder to the abode of an ugly old woman, he finds himself turned into a flea. Oliver is a patrician, fun-loving American who has come to Paris to start a literary journal with the help of friends in D.C. who ask a few favors in return. He’s in well over his head, but it’s nothing that a cocktail can’t fix. Right? Add a few chance encounters, a chorus of some more angry witches, a strung-out jazzman or two, a weaponized LSD program, and a cache of rifles buried in the Bois de Bologne—and that’s a novel! But while Toby Barlow’s Babayaga may start as just a joyful romp though the City of Light, it quickly grows into a daring, moving exploration of love, mortality, and responsibility.

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Product details

  • Paperback | 400 pages
  • 234 x 234 x 156mm | 666g
  • ATLANTIC BOOKS
  • Corvus
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Main
  • 1782393331
  • 9781782393337
  • 220,753

Review quote

Spies and witches; sex and Kafka; boomtown Detroit and postwar Paris... Toby Barlow is a warlock. Babayaga is his potion. Drink up -- Robin Sloan Eye of newt and toe of frog, wit and heart and mordant social commentary: this dark, delicious brew from Toby Barlow has it all -- Hillary Jordan Tolkien meets Graham Greene meets Anne Rice New York Magazine Babayaga works magic to make 'the impossible possible'... Toby Barlow's adept combination of unexpected genres conjures a tale of witches, the CIA and a detective-turned-flea in 1950s Paris... Bewitching Los Angeles Times Delivers a helluva good time, a delicious mash-up of Cold War spy thriller, horror novel, and love story... It's witty and charming and exceedingly light on its feet... The novel is really something out of the ordinary Booklist Tremendous... As ambitious as any literary novel, because underneath all that fur, it's about identity, community, love, death, and all the things we want our books to be about -- Nick Hornby on SHARP TEETH

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About Toby Barlow

Toby Barlow is a writer who lives in downtown Detroit.

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