Beautiful Animals by Lawrence Osborne - review by Sam Kitchener

Sam Kitchener

Guilt Trip

Beautiful Animals

By

Hogarth 296pp £14.99 order from our bookshop
 

The Greek island of Hydra has long been a favoured bolthole for the louche and bohemian. ‘Aesthetically,’ wrote Henry Miller, ‘it is perfect.’ In 1960 Leonard Cohen marvelled at the way ‘life has been going on here exactly the same for hundreds of years.’ The novelist Lawrence Osborne is well acquainted with Hydra’s history as a sun-blushed haven from the ugliness of modern life, having written about the island wearing his other Panama hat as a travel journalist for the New York Times.

With his linen suits, boozy sneer and transatlantic lilt, Osborne resembles the expats who populate his books – stylish thrillers, normally, about travellers who find themselves drawn into nightmarish scenarios in exotic climes. You would not be surprised to find him propping up the bar at Raffles, still

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