A Dancing Bear

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Show Info: What if getting the girl meant becoming a terrorist wet boy? On an unnamed university campus late in the 20th century, a young man named Fenton Bland joins a society of student Maoists in order to get near the girl he loves. But the girl turns out to belong to the chief Maoist -- and he turns out to harbor alarming aspirations in the field of revolutionary terror. And so Fenton, wearing a forcibly grown beard, finds himself propelled into a bizarre covert world of death lists, backyard bomb labs, untraceable handguns, and attempted wet jobs of wildly varying quality -- a world in which he must choose between losing the girl forever or else participating, perhaps very soon, in a successful terrorist atrocity. Along the way he must contend with a motley cast of characters, few of whom enjoy optimal grips on reality. There is Gus, the Maoist kingpin who in his quest to become a practising terrorist will draw the line at nothing, not even a car bombing ("I'm listening, mate -- provided you're not referring to my Kombi.") There is the fiery student radical Pamela Scratch, linked to Fenton by an infinitely regrettable sex act perpetrated in a sandpit at the age of five. And there is the incarcerated and patently guilty multiple murderer Neville Claude Aggot, whose spectacular escape augments the already long list of impending homicides that Fenton must at least try to avert as the novel hurtles, like a Kombi full of high explosive, towards its climax...

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