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Nothing but a Circus
Nothing but a Circus

Nothing but a Circus


208 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Trade Paper, Cloth

Trade Paper, $24.95 (US $24.95)

Publication Date: January 2017

ISBN 9780241299715

Rights: US

Penguin UK (Jan 2017)
Allen Lane

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In this eye-opening exploration of the human weaknesses for power, Daniel Levin takes us on a journey through the absurd world of our global elites, drawing unforgettable sketches of some of the puppets who stand guard, and the jugglers and conjurers employed within. Most spectacular of all, however, are the astonishing contortions performed by those closest to the top in order to maintain the illusion of integrity, decency, and public service. Based on the author's first hand experiences of dealing with governments and political institutions around the world, Nothing but a Circus offers a rare glimpse of the conversations that happen behind closed doors, observing the appalling lengths that people go to in order to justify their unscrupulous choices, from Dubai to Luanda, Moscow to Beijing, and at the heart of the UN and the US government. Read more at


"Brilliant observations on the anthropology of power. You will laugh aloud and won't put it down." —Daniel Kahneman

"Entertaining . . . reveals the sometimes less-than-glittering reality of life with the global elite." —John Gapper, Financial Times 

"Hilarious." —John Kampfner, Guardian

"Memorable . . . an engrossing read that leaves you wondering who could feel at home in this world." —Fiona Wilson, Times

"Amusing and telling . . . mixed in with the farce is a pervading sense of creepiness." —Matthew Partridge, Money Week

"These revealing stories of absurdity are simultaneously captivating, humorous, and distressing." —Publishers Weekly

Author Biography

Daniel Levin has spent the last twenty years working with governments and development institutions worldwide. A lawyer by profession, he is an advisor on political and economic affairs, from financial development to conflict resolution. He is currently a member of the board of the Liechtenstein Foundation for State Governance. Nothing but a Circus is his first book.