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Synopsis

"One of 2012's most enjoyable novels" --New York Times

"This is a dark, sharp, very funny novel about imprisonment, torture and the dangerous pleasures of stories." --Zoe Heller, Notes on a Scandal

“The King of Pain is a book with messages, wrapped in stories and sprinkled with wit, bound together by the themes of imprisonment and human endurance…Kaufman has created a brilliant satire that entertains as it sends its message."--Zig Zag Timeline

A riotously funny portrait of an out-of-control entertainment mogul and a devastating look at torture and imprisonment, The King of Pain is part Jennifer Egan, part Italo Calvino, part "Entourage," and 100% marvelous.

Rick Salter expects to be hated; after all, he’s the mind behind the outrageous—and outrageously successful—reality TV show about torture, “The King of Pain.” What he finds much more worrisome than the ire of cultural critics is that when he wakes up one Saturday morning, he’s trapped underneath his gigantic home entertainment system with no idea how he got there. Rick has 48 long hours ahead of him  and nothing to pass the time except pain, bad memories—and a strange book he finds lying beside him. Called “A History of Prisons,” it is written by one Seth Kaufman, and it seems mysteriously relevant to Rick’s predicament…

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