'Annabel was a black and white figure in the distance, going in through the front doors. She worked behind the reception. I was a history teacher.' As we meet Matt, lying across the backseat of his on/off girlfriend's car, he begins a long confession. It starts with wrestling moves and continues past statue fires, reaching bomb threats and assault via episodes in the life of Franz von Papen, the Chancellor of interwar Germany. Piece by piece, Matt presents us with a map of his failures. Or is he part of some grander, universal fuck-up? Septembers, Christopher Prendergast's debut novel, is a simmering tale of upheaval, revolt and loss.