A digitally augmented novel about the shady world of contractors in postwar Iraq deserves its Booker longlistingRichard House has written a gripping, hallucinogenic – and enormous – novel that deals with the aftermath of the Iraq conflict. In keeping with the now traditional western outlook on such things, not a single Iraqi features in its large cast of characters, despite long sections set in the Iraq desert. However, in many ways this is the point of The Kills – longlisted for this year’s Man Booker prize – which, unlike most novels and films about the war, focuses on non-combatants. This is not about the mercenaries, foreign hired guns or co-conspirators familiar to us all, but the British and American civilian contractors who have left behind unpromising lives for highly paid short-term engagements in the danger zone, and the businessmen who oversee them.The Kills spans four “books” or parts, and is published in paper as a mammoth 1,000-plus-page volume, or in an enhanced edition for tablets and smartphones. The digital edition is far and away the better way to read this novel; the first two books in particular are augmented by a series of short films embedded on the page, often …read more

Via: The Guardian | Books