It's the middle of February and all over Auckland the lights are going out. Samuel Usher is a data-retrieval specialist: a broken man working on broken machines. Sam's drinking too much, taking too many drugs - trying to get by. Until he meets Candy and Jules, two drifting mathematicians, each after a Holy Grail - the one perfect theory that will make their worlds complete. After five years together, neither is getting any closer to their goal. As for Sam - he just wants Candy. And for a while, it looks as if he may have her. Then Jules is found in a coma, and Candy disappears. All Sam's left with is a strange list of numbers and three words: ANYWAY FREEDOM GOODBYE. Sam's pursuit of the truth will lead him into an underworld of chaos and turbulence, where numbers rule and love and friendship collide.
Chad Taylor was born in 1964. He is the author of six novels and two collections of short stories. His second novel, Heaven, was made into a Miramax feature film, for which he wrote the screenplay. Shirker, his first book to be published outside New Zealand, has been translated into five languages. He lives and works in New Zealand, where he was awarded the Buddle Findlay Sargeson Fellowship for literature in 2001.