H is a boxer past his prime. Haunted by the memory of the fight that should have made him great, he is chasing his dream through the seedier side of the London boxing circuit, losing fights against his untalented opponents, his wife and, ultimately, himself. When a gunfight at an illegal shebeen drags him down into a multicultural underworld of violence and extortion, H finds himself in debt to the sinister sociopath, White Alan. Only now does he realise that once and for all he must face his demons and enter the ring one final time.
Set on the meaner streets of London that no tourist is ever likely to see, this striking noir thriller from a great new talent is authentic, fast moving and entertaining. THE LAST CARD is intended to be the first in a series of novels starring H.
Lee is at work on his second novel, also starring H, about a sports psychologist who gets embroiled in dodgy dealings in a tennis camp for young stars.
‘This impressive debut novel serves up spot-on dialogue, excels in explorations of how violence can escalate in the blink of an eye, and gives the tried and tested tale of a beleaguered man facing his demons a thrilling new twist in an unusual setting.’ Laura Wilson, Guardian
‘Firing dialogue, genuine believable characters and what impressed me the most is the scope of characters - from all walks of life. He cranks up the tension and keeps it simmering like the best film noir - one of the best 'London' novels since Absolute Beginners. Kolton writes about a London we are all fascinated by but are scared to tread.’ Alex Wheatle
‘A simmering noir novel set in the sleazy end of the London boxing circuit and illegal gambling dens. He is a boxer past his prime, full of regrets and in debt to a vicious psychopath. He is dragged into a multiracial underworld of violence and extortion. Can he find a way out? Sweaty, brutal and powerful.’ Observer
Arcadia Books UK (WEL)
Material: finished copies (260pp).