- Publisher: Hamish Hamilton (2022-04-05)
- Language: English
- Paperback: 384 pages
- ISBN-13: 9780670063949
- Item Weight: 567.0 grams
- Dimensions: 9.28 x 6.29 x 1.29 cm
LONGLISTED FOR THE 2023 LEACOCK MEDAL FOR HUMOUR
“A super-typhoon of a novel. A Babel of rogues, survivors, and shape-shifters. A polemic against corruption and greed. A sassy, swerving mini-series, touched by grace and beauty. A Filipino Bonfire of the Vanities for our beleaguered times. An uncompromising work of art.” —David Mitchell, author of Utopia Avenue
“It’s a rare novel that leaves you reeling simultaneously with admiration, exhaustion, amazement at its author’s reach and skill, and desolation at the world it spreads out before you . . . [A] raging protest of a book.” —The New York Times Book Review
From the author of the Man Asian Award-winning Ilustrado, an unflinching satire about power, corruption, sex, and all the other topics you were told never to discuss in polite company.
First came the Sexy-Sexygate scandal. Then an impeachment trial. Finally, a battle royale for the presidency. At the center of this political typhoon is Vita Nova, the Philippines’ most famous movie star and former paramour of the country’s most powerful man. Now, for the first time ever, she bares herself completely in a tell-all memoir that puts the sensational in sensationalistic.
The setting: a sweating, heaving country. The time: right now. The plot: a drug war rages; an assassin brandishes a pistol; a damsel rises from ashes to power; and a government teeters on the brink. Among the players are a dreamer who boxed and acted his way to the presidency; his Koran-toting nemesis in the Senate; a horny bishop; a cowboy turned warlord; a poor little rich boy dying with his dynasty; a washed-up reporter redeemed by one last scoop; a high school sweetheart driven mad by decades of disappointment; and an American naval officer tempting our heroine with a way out. As Vita warns, viewer discretion is advised.
In this masterful and audacious novel, Miguel Syjuco’s signature style—hilarious, insightful, playful, and provocative—animates thirteen indelible voices whose stories present a cross-section of a complicated society. I Was the President’s Mistress!! hurtles headlong into love, politics, faith, history, memory, and the ongoing war over who will tell the stories the world shall know as truth.
About the Author
MIGUEL SYJUCO is a Filipino author, journalist, civil society advocate, and professor at New York University Abu Dhabi. His debut novel, Ilustrado, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and won both the Man Asian Literary Prize and the Grand Prize at the Palanca Awards, his country’s top literary honor. He has worked as a contributing opinion writer for The International New York Times, written for many of the world’s most respected publications, and spoken on Philippine politics and culture at the World Forum for Democracy and the World Economic Forum. He serves on the advisory councils of the Civitella Ranieri Foundation, an international arts residency program, and the Resilience Fund, a project of the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime to empower communities most threatened by criminality.