Short Ride on a Fast Machine is a quirky and engaging caper: the story of a young cycle courier from London who goes on an improbable journey to Norway, to pick up a stuffed owl for a mysterious client. For his oddest job to date, Sam enlists the help of his friend and fellow courier Poyntz. But as they make their haphazard journey to Mr Sorensen’s mountain hut, its owner is attracting the attention of the Norwegian police. Have Sam and Poyntz become unlikely accomplices in one of the biggest crimes in the country’s history?
Short Ride on a Fast Machine is a moving and mature meditation on love, death, and the passing of time, with a thread of satire woven gracefully through it – poking gentle, affectionate fun at modern cultural mores including taxidermy, Nordic crime, cheap air-travel and even the international art market. Somewhat picaresque and very funny, Magnus McGrandle is an incredibly observant writer with a lively and intelligent interest in the zeitgeist, and a distinctive new voice who captures the exuberant joy of being young, alongside life’s heartbreaks.
"McGrandle has pulled off the seemingly impossible task of weaving a contemporary, hip fiction out of the fusty old love of the bike." Ned Boulting
"A freewheeling, off road, crazy rollercoaster of an adventure, funny and heartbreaking by turns. This has the making of a cult novel." Esther Freud