Rock star Alex Bleach might be dead, but he has a secret. It’s a secret that concerns several people, but the only person who can unlock it is Vernon Subutex, former record shop proprietor turned homeless messiah and guru, last seen hallucinating and feverish on a bench. He has tapes of Alex that will shake the world. The hunt is on, and the wolves are closing in.
Meanwhile, the cast of lovers and killers in Vernon’s orbit is in violent disarray. Aïcha wants to know the truth behind the death of her mother, the porn star Vodka Satana. And if she finds the bastards responsible, she wants to make them pay, whatever Céleste thinks of her plan. Céleste wants Aïcha to get a grip and stop hanging around with Subutex’s gang of disciples. The Hyena wants to find the Bleach tapes. She wants to untangle her complicated feelings about Anaïs, her boss’s assistant. And speaking of her boss, she does not want Laurent Dopalet to discover how badly she has double-crossed him.
Big-shot producer Laurent Dopalet wants the Hyena to find and destroy the Bleach tapes. He wants to forget he ever knew Vodka Satana. He wants people to stop graffitiing his apartment with ludicrous allegations. Above all, he wants people to understand: None of This is His Fault
"Virginie Despentes is a true original, a punk rock George Eliot with a keen taste for the pitiable innards of her characters: no one else has her slyly penetrating eye, her spiky sense of humor, her razor wit that cuts like wire through the accumulated crud of our age's default thought patterns. In her masterful hands,Vernon Subutex becomes a droll, hilarious, insightful record of our unfortunate times."—Alexandra Kleeman, author of You Too Can Have a Body Like Mine
"Cool, plentiful, and absolute genius. Virginie Despentes has a license to ill. Vernon Subutex is one of the best books of this decade."—Alex Gilvarry, author of Eastman Was Here
"The apparent deaths by drug overdose of indie rock star Alex Bleach and his porn star ex-girlfriend unite a motley crew of armchair investigators in this rollicking second volume of a trilogy set in 2014 Paris . . . Such is the snowballing effect of this sexed-up epic, an achievement greater than the sum of its wildly colorful parts."—Publisher's Weekly (starred review)
Reviews from Goodreads
VERNON WAITS UNTIL IT’S DARK and the lights in all the windows have been turned out before climbing over the railings and venturing into the communal gardens. The thumb on his left hand is throbbing, he doesn’t remember how he got this little...