A delectable collection of Theroux's recent writing on great places, people, and prose In the spirit of his much-loved Sunrise with Seamonsters and Fresh Air Fiend, Paul Theroux's latest collection of essays leads the reader through a dazzling array of sights, characters, and experiences, as Theroux applies his signature searching curiosity to a life lived as much in reading as on the road. This writerly tour-de-force features a satisfyingly varied selection of topics that showcase Theroux's sheer versatility as a writer. Travel essays take us to Ecuador, Zimbabwe, and Hawaii, to name a few. Gems of literary criticism reveal fascinating depth in the work of Henry David Thoreau, Graham Greene, Joseph Conrad, and Hunter Thompson. And in a series of breathtakingly personal profiles, we take a helicopter ride with Elizabeth Taylor, go surfing with Oliver Sacks, eavesdrop on the day-to-day life of a Manhattan dominatrix, and explore New York with Robin Williams. An extended mediation on the craft of writing binds together this wide-ranging collection, along with Theroux's constant quest for the authentic in a person or in a place.
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by Karl Ove Knausgaard
by Paul Theroux
"Theroux's travels--literal and literary; cultural and hallucinogenic--render a splendid challenge for Edoardo Ballerini, the narrator of these 30 essays composed between 2001-16. It is met with verve and acuity. As Theroux marvels during tea with Muriel Spark on her passion for "peculiar truth" and "boldness of . . . characterization," he could be writing about himself (an act that also occurs in this collection). Always a fan of the road less traveled, Theroux also explores such writers as Georges Simenon, Joseph Conrad, and Henry David Thoreau, and travels to Hawaii, Michael Jackson's Neverland, and Zimbabwe. Best of all, Ballerini's perfectly paced, low-key narration captures the wit and irony of the essayist's probing nonfiction with a style that places its language and reflections center stage. D.P.D. © AudioFile 2019, Portland, Maine"
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