30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Care of Wooden Floors (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Care of Wooden Floors is Will Wiles' first novel but it is a masterpiece. Our narrator is charged with looking after the extremely high-end, eastern-European flat of his dear university friend Oskar - a Philharmonic pianist - whilst Oskar is in L.A. getting divorced from his high-end, western-American wife. The job seems simple enough initially, feed the cats, take the rubbish out, oh, and mind the floors, they're brand new & French oak. As our narrator explores the soviet-bloc city and drinks bottle after bottle of Oskar's collection, small mishaps lead to bigger problems and the narrator realises he may have irreparably damaged Oskar's flat & in turn, their friendship - what will he say upon his return?
COWF is very clever; it's initial set-up maybe very simple and you might feel that there is not an awful lot of material to work with, but it's the gradual unpeeling of Oskar via his neurotic hidden notes throughout the flat that brings a fantastic level of character development. The flat becomes a metaphor for perfection; an ideal life that the narrator envies and fantasises about. As the continual stream of destruction and wine-rings the narrator brings flows freely, he learns that some things aren't alive without a few scars as proof of living.
Well written; based in a nameless ex-soviet city and more about a man that is absent for the entirety of the book than it is the narrator, but highly enjoyable, written in vivacious and lucid prose and made me laugh out loud on several occasions. Literature of this calibre from a new author is rare, highly recommended!!