Ripley Bogle, a self-proclaimed bum, an excoriating and expectorating Irish expatriate from Belfast, is a Cambridge dropout who, penniless but unbowed, wanders the streets of London. Here lies the mystery of this book: how could anyone of Bogle's prodigious intelligence and powers of perception end up in vagabondage? Chain-smoking his way around London, young Bogle looks to stitch together the pieces of his ragged life - to forgive himself his sins and to find a place of warmth within his own dark thoughts. Life has dealt him a lousy hand and is not to be forgiven - though, in the end, it is to be celebrated.
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