Old Filth was shortlisted for the Orange Prize in 2005 and is a shockingly brilliant exploration of the life of a judge called Filth - which comes from his nickname Failed In London Try Hong Kong. His years are full of sorrow and success and they follow the rollercoaster of the British Empire in that period. Originally a Raj orphan sent home from Malaya, Filth is shuffled from foster home to cold dormitory, his only companion his brilliant mind. We meet him in old age where his main source of solace has been his wife and his career. But of course a life is not always what it seems and Gardam illuminates all of the ambiguities, hidden tensions and delusions that hold him together. Your emotional channels will certainly open if you read this and this is the reason that the novel will never die. If it is this good,it is almost like life!