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Catherine Gehrig, conservator at a London museum, learns of the unexpected death of her colleague and lover of thirteen years. Only the museum’s director knew of the affair, and sends Catherine to work on a special project away from prying eyes. An automaton, a man and a woman who can never meet, a secret love story, and the fate of the world are all brought to life in this hauntingly moving novel from one of the finest writers of our time. Twice winner of the Booker Prize, Peter Carey's most recent novel Parrot and Olivier in America was described by the Sunday Times as 'an exhilarating tour-de-force'