Down the Rabbit Hole by Juan Pablo Villalobos

Down the Rabbit Hole

Juan Pablo Villalobos

Poor little rich boy, Tochtli, son of a Mexican drug baron, lives a lonely life in a palace in Mexico. Tochtli is obsessed with TV violence and has a love for using complex (if not always appropriate) words in daily conversations. A desire to obtain a Liberian Pygmy Hippopotamus for his private zoo is indulged by his father with disastrous results. A short, sad but funny tale narrated by an unreliable 5 year old makes for an unusual first novel.

Extract

Today there was an enigmatic corpse on the TV: they cut off his head and he wasn't even a king. It didn't look like it was the work of the French either, who like cutting off heads so much. The French put the heads in a basket after cutting them off. I saw it in a film. They put the basket just under the king's head in the guillotine. Then the French let the blade fall and the king's head is cut off and lands in the basket. That's why I like the French so much, they're so refined.

Parallels
  • Loving Sabotage by Amelie Nothomb
  • Queen of the South by Arturo Perez-Reverte
  • What Maisie Knew by Henry James

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