In The Garden of Bad Dreams characters strive for order despite the entropy that surrounds them: a nostalgic circus man is compelled to collect small people; an industrious monk strives to push a mountain away from his monastery; the widow of an English captain tends her rose garden wearing an old Panama hat and tiny red slippers on her bound feet; and desperate soldiers eat an entire zoo, leaving only a pale jaguar from the jungles of South America. Transporting its readers from a city under siege to a forested hillside in central Serbia, via an ex-servicemen's estate in Badminton, The Garden of Bad Dreams is an imaginative feast, a surprising, exhilarating meeting place for the absurd and the strangely familiar, by a writer at the height of his powers.
Christopher Hope was born in Johannesburg in 1944. He is the author of nine novels, including Kruger's Alp, which won the Whitbread Prize for Fiction, Serenity House, which was shortlisted for the 1992 Booker Prize, and My Mother's Lovers, published by Atlantic Books in 2006 to great acclaim. He is also a poet and playwright and author of the celebrated memoir White Boy Running (1988).