Figures in a landscape : people and places : essays: 2001-2016 / Paul Theroux.
- ISBN: 0544870301
- ISBN: 9780544870307 (hardback)
- ISBN: 9780544870307 : HRD
- ISBN: 0544870301 : HRD
- ISBN: 9780544870307 (hardcover)
- ISBN: 0544870301 (hardcover)
- Physical Description: xvii, 386 pages ; 24 cm
- Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2018.
- Copyright: ©2018
"An Eamon Dolan book."
|Formatted Contents Note:||
Introduction: Study for figures in a landscape -- My drug tour: searching for ayahuasca -- Thoreau in the wilderness -- Liz in Neverland -- Greeneland -- Hunter in the kingdom of fear -- Conrad at sea -- Simenon's world -- Dr. Sacks, the healer -- Nurse Wolf, the hurter -- Robin Williams: "Who's he when he's at home?" -- Tea with Muriel Spark -- Mrs. Robinson revisited -- Talismans for our dreams -- The rock star's burden -- Living with geese -- Trespassing in Africa -- The seizures in Zimbabwe -- Stanley: the ultimate African explorer -- Paul Bowles: not a tourist -- Maugham: up and down in Asia -- English hours: nothing personal -- Traveling beyond Google -- Hawaii: islands upon islands -- Mockingbird in Monroeville -- Benton's America -- My life as a reader -- The real me: a memory -- Life and the magazine -- Dear old dad: memories of my father -- The trouble with autobiography.
"A delectable collection of Theroux's recent writing on great places, people, and prose"-- Provided by publisher.
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Figures in a Landscape : People and Places
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Essays from profiles and short travel pieces to book reviews and book introductions surely seem quaternary to the prolific Theroux's novels, short stories, and travel books. And yet these pieces, written to make a reasonable living and produce the illusion of respectable employment, now make up a respectable portion of his output: this third collection brings his total to 134 essays over 53 years. Those who've missed these 30 pieces where previously published will be impressed by the breadth of his interests, the depth of his research, and the scrupulousness of his prose. A profile of Elizabeth Taylor (Liz in Neverland) works a miracle, allowing us to view the icon with unjaded eyes. A lengthy profile of a dominatrix (Nurse Wolf) offers genuine insight into both spanker and spanked. Appreciations of Conrad, Greene, Maugham, and Simenon show how book introductions ought to be done. And the closing, more personal pieces the most powerful of which, Dear Old Dad: Memories of My Father, formed the basis for his novel Mother Land (2017) add emotional heft and shape to this wide-ranging, thought-provoking, and eminently browsable collection.--Graff, Keir Copyright 2018 Booklist
Publishers Weekly Review
Figures in a Landscape : People and Places
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Novelist and travel writer Theroux (Mother Land) is at the top of his game with his third collection of essays, a magisterial grouping of intimate remembrances, globe-trotting adventures, and incisive literary critiques. The 30 essays are culled from national publications and book introductions over a 15-year period, melding vivid narratives with shaded renderings of Theroux's inner life. The deeply personal "Dear Old Dad: Memories of My Father," reminisces about a loving yet remote parent who never read any of his son's work. "My Life as a Reader" explores Theroux's love affair with reading as a bookish child, and, later, as a teacher in Africa. "Trespassing in Africa" is his frightening tale of sex and recklessness during a booze-driven bender one Christmas in Zambia. His travels take him to Asia, Africa, Hawaii (now his home), and Morocco. Paul Bowles Michael Jackson, Oliver Sacks, Muriel Spark, Elizabeth Taylor, and Robin Williams are profiled, as well as a dominatrix whose vulnerability comes through amid the salacious details of her work in "Nurse Wolf, the Hurter." A highly versatile, appealing writer, Theroux casts a wide net with pleasing and entertaining results. (May) Â© Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.