The Glass Kingdom

Lawrence Osborne (Author)


A NEW YORK TIMES EDITORS' CHOICE - A tense, stunningly well-observed novel of a young American on the run, from Lawrence Osborne, "an heir to Graham Greene" (The New York Times Book Review)

"Bangkok is the star of this accomplished novel. Its denizens are aliens to themselves, glittering on the horizon of their own lives, moving--restless and rootless and afraid--though a cityscape that has more stories than they know."--Hilary Mantel, Booker Prize-winning author of Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies

Escaping New York for the anonymity of Bangkok, Sarah Mullins arrives in Thailand on the lam with nothing more than a suitcase of purloined money. Her plan is to lie low and map out her next move in a high-end apartment complex called the Kingdom, whose glass-fronted fa ade boasts views of the bustling city and glimpses into the vast honeycomb of lives within.

It is not long before she meets the alluring Mali doing laps in the apartment pool, a fellow tenant determined to bring the quiet American out of her shell. An invitation to Mali's weekly poker nights follows, and--fueled by shots of yadong, good food, and gossip--Sarah soon falls in with the Kingdom's glamorous circle of ex-pat women.

But as political chaos erupts on the streets below and attempted uprisings wrack the city, tensions tighten within the gilded compound. When the violence outside begins to invade the Kingdom in a series of strange disappearances, the residents are thrown into suspicion: both of the world beyond their windows and of one another. And under the constant surveillance of the building's watchful inhabitants, Sarah's safe haven begins to feel like a snare.

From a master of atmosphere and mood, The Glass Kingdom is a brilliantly unsettling story of civil and psychological unrest, and an enthralling study of karma and human greed.

Product Details

$27.00  $24.84
Hogarth Press
Publish Date
August 18, 2020
5.8 X 1.1 X 8.3 inches | 0.9 pounds

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About the Author

Lawrence Osborne is the author of six critically acclaimed novels, including The Forgiven, Hunters in the Dark, and Beautiful Animals, as well as six books of nonfiction, including Bangkok Days. His most recent novel, Only to Sleep: A Philip Marlowe Novel, was nominated for an Edgar Award and named as a Best Book of the Year by The New York Times Book Review. He has led a nomadic life, living in Paris, New York, Mexico, and Istanbul, and he currently resides in Bangkok.


Praise for Lawrence Osborne:

"[A] startlingly good observer of privilege, noting the rites and rituals of the upper classes with unerring precision and an undercurrent of malice... Osborne has been described as an heir to Graham Greene, and he shares with Greene an interest in what might be called the moral thriller." --Katie Kitamura, New York Times Book Review

"[Osborne's] distinguished palette includes the big yearning of Scott Fitzgerald and the decadent hedonism of Charles Baudelaire. Most impressive of all, and there is much to be impressed by, Osborne handles surface and depth with immense skill, as only great writers do." --Deborah Levy, Financial Times

"[Lawrence Osborne] unites Graham Greene's fondness for foreign soil with Patricia Highsmith's fascination with the nastier coils of the human psyche... What makes Osborne's work so compelling is that it's ruthlessly unpredictable." --NPR

"Osborne's writing is uncomfortably well observed; his story is sickeningly, addictively headlong" --Lionel Shriver, author of We Need to Talk about Kevin

"If the purpose of a novel is to take you away from the everyday and show you something different, then Osborne is succeeding, and handsomely" --Lee Child, New York Times Book Review

"Mr. Osborne has a keen and sometimes cruel eye for humans and their manners and morals... Surprising and dark and excellent" --New York Times