'In case you had not noticed,' writes Adam Thirlwell in his first novel, Politics, 'in this book I am not interested in anything so small as the history of the USSR. I am not writing anything so limited.' In this epic miniature, therefore, Politics tells the story of three kids in their twenties falling in love with each in London. And, simultaneously, it tells other, smaller stories: of Stalin on the phone, Mao in the bathroom, Osip Mandelstam in another bathroom, Adolf Hitler on all fours, and Milan Kundera in an argument. Politics is not (quite) about politics.