Keith Mabbut is at a crossroads in his life. A professional writer of some repute, he has reached the age of fifty-six with nothing resembling the success of his two great literary heroes, George Orwell and Albert Camus. When he is offered the opportunity of a lifetime-to write the biography of the elusive Hamish Melville, a widely respected and highly influential activist and humanitarian-he seizes the chance to write something meaningful. His search to find out the real story behind the legend takes Mabbut to the lush landscapes and environmental hotspots of India.
The more he discovers about Melville, the more he admires him-and the more he connects with an idealist who wanted to make a difference. But is his quarry really who he claims to be? As Keith discovers, the truth can be whatever we make it.
In this wonderful, heartwarming novel, Michael Palin turns his considerable skills to fiction in the story of an ordinary man on an extraordinary adventure.
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"Middle-aged, washed-up environmental journalist Keith Mabbut gets the assignment of a lifetimeÑwrite a tell-all book about a reclusive activist. Mabbut travels from England to India and back again in search of answers, all while dealing with his own family's upheavalÑhis wife's seeing another man; his daughter's involved with a troubled Iranian dissident; he's estranged from his son; and he's harboring romantic feelings for a former co-worker. Narrator Alex Jennings spans continents with a variety of European and Indian accentsÑalways subtle, never caricatures. Jennings expertly puts the story first, a clever and enjoyable meditation on the publishing world, big business, liberal values, and the consequences of discovering "the truth." J.M.D. © AudioFile 2013, Portland, Maine"
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