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The Garden of Last Daysby Andre Dubus III
Synopses & Reviews
In his stunning follow-up to the #1 best-selling House of Sand and Fog, Andre Dubus draws us into the lives of three deeply flawed, driven people whose paths intersect on a September night in Florida. April, a stripper, has brought her daughter to work at the Puma Club for Men. There she encounters Bassam, a foreign client both remote and too personal, and free with his money. Meanwhile, another man, AJ, has been thrown out of the club, and he's drunk and angry and lonely. From these explosive elements comes a relentless, raw, and page-turning narrative that seizes the reader by the throat with psychological tension, depth, and realism.
"Dubus's ambitious if uneven follow-up to House of Sand and Fog begins shortly before 9/11 with stripper April taking her three-year-old daughter, Franny, to work after the babysitter flakes at the last minute. Though she leaves Franny with the club's house mother and intends to keep tabs on her, April's distracted on the floor by Bassam, a Muslim who's in Florida to take flying lessons and (like one of the real 9/11 hijackers) spends early September 2001 throwing around money and living lasciviously. Meanwhile, AJ, a down-on-his-luck local, lingers in the parking lot after getting thrown out for touching a dancer. The slow-starting plot splinters once Franny wanders outside and disappears. Soon, AJ's wanted for kidnapping, April's run through the social service wringers as an unfit parent, and the murky particulars of Bassam's mission come into sharp focus as he struggles with his religious convictions. Dubus gives the breath of life to most of his characters (Bassam — not so much), though the narrative has a mechanical feeling, partially owing to the narrow emotional register Dubus works in: doom and desperation are in plentiful supply from page one, and as the novel fades to black, the reader's left with a roster of sadder-but-wiser Americans to contemplate. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Dubus does a masterful job of allowing the reader to understand, if not forgive, why each character does what he or she does....Difficult to put down, impossible to forget." Kirkus Reviews
"So good, so damn compulsively readable, that I can hardly believe it." Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly
From the author of the New York Times bestseller and Oprah's Book Club selection House of Sand and Fog comes a new, painful, page-turning novel that seizes the reader by the throat.
"So good, so damn compulsively readable, that I can hardly believe it." --Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly
“A pulsing, profound novel.” —Entertainment Weekly
“Asks enormous questions about cosmic truth—and its effect on those who think they own it—with intensity, intellectual rigor and abiding morality.” —San Francisco Chronicle
“Precise and passionate . . . stunning.” —Philadelphia Inquirer
Jerusalem: home to seekers, heretics, hustlers, and madmen of many faiths. In this most fractious city, a plot unfolds to bomb the sacred Temple Mount.
Christopher Lucas, an expatriate American journalist, stumbles upon the plot while investigating religious fanatics. Entangled in the intrigue are a nightclub singer, an unstable Jewish guru, a strung-out Kabbalist seeking the messiah, and a soldier of fortune routinely found at the world’s violent clashes. A confrontation in Gaza, a chase through riot-filled streets, a cat-and-mouse game in an underground maze—as Lucas races against time, he uncovers the duplicity and depravity on all sides of Jerusalem’s sacred struggle.
An explosive 1998 bestseller,Damascus Gatelays bare the dangers at the fringes of faith.
'One early September night in Florida, a stripper brings her daughter to work. April\'s usual babysitter is in the hospital, so she decides it\'s best to have her three-year-old daughter close by, watching children\'s videos in the office, while she works.
Except that April works at the Puma Club for Men. And tonight she has an unusual client, a foreigner both remote and too personal, and free with his money. Lots of it, all cash. His name is Bassam. Meanwhile, another man, AJ, has been thrown out of the club for holding hands with his favorite stripper, and he\'s drunk and angry and lonely.
From these explosive elements comes a relentless, raw, searing, passionate, page-turning narrative, a big-hearted and painful novel about sex and parenthood and honor and masculinity. Set in the seamy underside of American life at the moment before the world changed, it juxtaposes lust for domination with hunger for connection, sexual violence with family love. It seizes the reader by the throat with the same psychological tension, depth, and realism that characterized Andre Dubus\'s #1 bestseller, House of Sand and Fog--and an even greater sense of the dark and anguished places in the human heart.'
About the Author
Andre Dubus III is the author of House of Sand and Fog(an Oprah"s Book Club selection and National Book Award Finalist), Bluesman, and The Cage Keeper and Other Stories. He lives with his family north of Boston.
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