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From the legendary American master Paul Theroux comes a brilliant new novel of chilling psychological depth, the tale of a younger brother whose lifelong rivalry with his older brother—a powerful lawyer with a pattern of gleefully vicious betrayals—culminates in the ultimate plan: murder.
Cal has always lived in the shadow of his manipulative and domineering brother, Frank, who was doted upon by their mother and beloved by the girls in their small New England hometown—including Cal’s own girlfriends. In an attempt to escape Frank’s intrusive presence, Cal pursues a different kind of freedom in the world’s wild spaces, prospecting for gold and precious minerals everywhere from the heat of the desert at the Mexican border to the Alaskan chill, to central Africa, and Colombian mines where he will meet the love of his life, Vida. Soon he is dripping in wealth, his pockets full of gold nuggets and emeralds, but the money means far less to him than his independence. To Frank, however, “Cash is king.” As Cal’s success grows, so too does Frank’s power and his influence in Cal’s affairs, the devastating threat he creates at the center of his little brother’s life. And, ultimately, when Frank decides to commit the ultimate betrayal…Cal is left with only one, final solution.
Few writers have as keen an eye for human nature as the inimitable Paul Theroux, and this riveting tale of adventure, betrayal, and the true cost of family bonds is an unmissable new work from one of America’s most distinguished and beloved novelists.
“A powerful tale of a decades-long sibling rivalry…Theroux plays skillfully on reader sympathies until the bitter end, showing how a man’s beliefs can make him turn to violence. The result is searing and memorable.” — Publishers Weekly
“Theroux’s work is like no one else’s.” — Francine Prose, New York Times Book Review
“The story of an aging surfer touches on the precariousness of everyday happiness…Mr. Theroux nicely captures not just surfing tales but a surfer lifestyle dedicated to self-sufficient contentment... Here is a book about losing happiness and the struggle demanded to recover it.” — Wall Street Journal on Under the Wave at Waimea
“Extraordinary. A frightening ride to the bottom of the soul of a man with a previously unexamined life. This is contemporary Hawaii as it’s rarely evoked, with surfing strangely near its troubled heart.” — William Finnegan, author of Barbarian Days, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, on Under the Wave at Waimea
“Incantatory, ecstatic, hypnotic...One of Theroux’s best novels.” — Seattle Times on Under the Wave at Waimea
“Devotees of Kem Nunn's Tapping the Source who have been searching for the next great surfing novel need search no more. In flowing, lyrical prose, Theroux celebrates the sheer individualistic exhilaration of riding waves.” — Booklist, starred review, on Under the Wave at Waimea