Cairo

Frustrated by country life and eager for adventure and excitement, seventeen-year-old Tom Button moves to the city to study. Once there, and living in a run-down apartment block called Cairo, he is befriended by the eccentric musician Max Cheever, his beautiful wife Sally, and their close-knit circle of painters and poets.

  As Tom falls under the sway of his charismatic older friends, he enters a bohemian world of parties and gallery openings. Soon, however, he is caught up in more sinister events involving deception and betrayal, not to mention one of the greatest unsolved art heists of the twentieth century: the infamous theft of Picasso’s Weeping Woman.

 Set among the demimonde — where nothing and nobody is as they seem — Cairo is a novel about growing up, the perils of first love, and finding one’s true place in the world.

Chris Womersley’s third novel, the follow-up to the hugely successful Bereft, brilliantly captures that unique blend of excitement and terror that comes with stepping out into adulthood for the first time.
— Readings Monthly
Chris Womersley’s third novel, Cairo, is as fresh and unexpected as his first two, and as difficult to classify.
— The Australian
More straight-talking than John Banville, less tricksy than Julian Barnes, Womersley nonetheless shares his British counterparts’ interest in the adult man forged in the flames of intense youthful experience. To this he adds the tension - though not necessarily the moral questions - of crime.
— The Age
I think this a funny, brilliant novel, romping through the story of a still unsolved theft seen through the eyes of a country boy at the threshold of life who finds himself swept away by his new friends... This is an instant classic.
— Crikey