Cuckooland: Where the Rich Own the Truth
‘URGENT AND CAUSTICALLY FUNNY… IF ORWELL WERE WITH US TODAY, HE’D BE WRITING BOOKS LIKE THIS’ PATRICK RADDEN KEEFE
‘BREATH-TAKING AND JAW-DROPPING’ PETER FRANKOPAN
‘A TRUE-LIFE TRHILLER’ ANNE APPLEBAUM
From the bestselling author of Kleptopia comes a true story about Cuckooland – a world where the rich can buy everything – including the truth.
Everywhere, the powerful are making a renewed claim to the greatest prize of all: to own the truth. The power to choose what you want reality to be and impose that reality on the world.
For three years, Tom Burgis followed a lead that took him deeper and deeper into Cuckooland – the place where the rich own the truth. The trail snaked from the Kremlin to Kathmandu, Stockholm to the Steppe, from a blood-soaked town square in Uzbekistan to a royal retreat in Scotland. Burgis hunted down oligarchs, developed secret sources and traced vast sums of money flowing between multinational corporations, ex-Soviet dictators and the west’s ruling elites. And he found one man who wanted the power to bend reality to his will.
This book tells an astonishing story: a tale of secrets and lies that reveals how fragile that truth can be. Whether it’s in Kazakh torture chambers or the UK’s High Court, the lords of Cuckooland are seizing control of the truth. They decree what stories may be told about war and money and power, what we are permitted to know – and more importantly, what we are not.
From the bestselling author of Kleptopia, Cuckooland is a deeply reported work of non-fiction that reads like a thriller. It is a story of how globalisation and technological revolution have combined to imperil the foundation of free societies: that the truth belongs to the many, not the few.
‘Written as a true-life thriller, Cuckooland reveals a secret world of access and influence, where inconvenient facts can be white-washed if you have the right connections and resources… the real subject is the Western and especially the British political and financial systems, which have enabled the spread of modern kleptocracy. A vital book for this election year’ -
ANNE APPLEBAUM -
‘Breath-taking and jaw-dropping all at the same time. I read it in one sitting - and couldn’t put it down. Astonishing’ -
PETER FRANKOPAN -
‘Tom Burgis brings these characters to life in a highly entertaining, readable story that you won’t soon forget. The uncomfortable conclusion you come to from reading this story is that everything seems to be for sale in the UK and most unfortunately, at the top of that list is our integrity’ -
BILL BROWDER -
‘This is the truth about how Britain has been corrupted. Tom Burgis has written perhaps the most urgent and important book of the year’ -
OLIVER BULLOUGH -
‘Tom Burgis is a once in a generation journalistic talent. Do you want to know how the world really works? Pick up this once in a decade book now and take it straight to the till. It will open your eyes into the way we live now’ -
BEN JUDAH -
‘Burgis is a witty Holmes taking us into the secret world of global corruption and geopolitics - a trail that leads right back home to us. As entertaining as it is disturbing and important’ -
PETER POMERANTSEV -
'Cuckooland exposes one of the very gravest dangers of our era: the way the rich and powerful try to suppress the truth and rewrite objective reality. In this lively, scathing account, Burgis fearlessly calls out crooked plutocrats, shameless influence peddlers and the mercenary enablers of the British legal establishment' -
PATRICK RADDEN KEEFE -