I Was the President's Mistress!! by Miguel Syjuco
From Farrar, Straus, & Giroux:
“Brilliant . . . Miguel Syjuco is his country’s most original and unflinching literary voice.” —Salman Rushdie
"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.” —James Lasdun, The New York Times Book Review (Editors' Choice)
From Miguel Syjuco, the winner of the Man Asian Literary Prize for Ilustrado, I Was the President's Mistress!! is 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 most famous movie star in the Philippines and a 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: 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, 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.