The Perpetual Astonishment of Jonathon Fairfax

Jonathon Fairfax, Book 1

Cover of The Perpetual Astonishment of Jonathon Fairfax by Christopher Shevlin

This hilarious adventure, “by turns absurd and engaging” (The Guardian), stars lovable, girl-fearing Jonathon as he accidentally sets off a chain of events leading to murder and a massive British government conspiracy — with a dream girl and a glamorous granny added to the mix.

When Jonathon Fairfax accidentally helps a murderer bump off Sarah Morecambe, the secretary of a senior politician, he sets off a chain of events that astonishes him. Jonathon is wrong-footed by even the most everyday things, so he's particularly startled to find himself caught up in a conspiracy that goes right to the heart of government.

Teaming up with a suave private investigator, a glamorous grannie and the probable love of his life, Jonathon must confront his greatest fears - including talking to girls and balaclava-clad killers - and answer some very difficult questions. Who murdered Sarah Morecambe? What is the strange secret that unites the entire British government? And what exactly does it feel like to kiss a real-life woman?

With its naïve, reluctant hero and wry look at life, The Perpetual Astonishment of Jonathon Fairfax has been compared to books by Douglas Adams, Carl Hiaasen and PG Wodehouse.

Achievements and reviews

Shortlisted for the Bath Novel Award 2014

‘It cleverly combines intrigue with comic, astute observation which made me laugh throughout.’

The Guardian

‘You can’t help being tickled.’

Stylist magazine

‘Not many books make me laugh out loud, but The Perpetual Astonishment of Jonathon Fairfax is one of them... A comic gem.’


'Shevlin was rightly picked up by the literary agency that represents the likes of David Nicholls.'

Rated 4.2 out of 5 – from over 500 Amazon UK reviews

Amazon UK bestseller   #1 Humour   #1 Humorous Fiction   #1 Political Humour   #25 overall

'When Christopher Shevlin sat down to write this book, the spirit of Douglas Adams sidled up next to him and said, "Here, let me help you." This book is probably - definitely - the funniest thing I have read since The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.'
A Kilmer,

'Shevlin has been compared to Wodehouse, and I'm sure he'll garner more compliments as the book is read. I would give it 11 if I could.'
posh sith, Amazon UK

'If you like tight writing, a great pace, smart references and laughing, this book will be on your top five list! Like reading an Arrested Development script.'
Bridget Aureli,

'I sincerely hope there will be another work from this author in the near future, to my way of thinking he is up there with Stella Gibbons and Saki.'
lizzieay, Amazon UK

"Shevlin's writing style, his wonderful way with eccentric characters, and his knack for combining kindness, silliness, and more than a few touching surprises, all fill a spot left by Douglas Adams."
Avery Elizabeth Hurt

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