Lights Out in Wonderland, By DBC Pierre

Party animal heading for the rabbit hole

DBC Pierre, whose debut Vernon God Little took the Booker Prize, returns here with his third novel, a rambunctious satire on capitalist excess.

The epigraph to Lights Out in Wonderland carries an exhortation to "romp through an empire's last spew", and romp our protagonist, Gabriel, most certainly does. An erstwhile anarchist pamphleteer, he lurches, soused, from one party to another, finally ending up in Berlin, where he helps put together an apocalyptic debauch in an underground aircraft hangar.

Depending on your point of view, Pierre's novel can be read as a ruthless assault on the values of a decadent civilisation, or as a prolonged wallow in eloquent misanthropy. Either way, it's great fun.