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Other titles in the Bur Oak Original series:
Hotel Malabar: A Narrative Poem by Brendan Galvin (Bur Oak Original)by Martha Moore Davis
Synopses & Reviews
Beginning with a question spoken into a tape recorder by one of the characters from the veranda of the Hotel Malabar, Brendan Galvin leads us into his engaging tour de force, a poem/ mystery novel/spy thriller ranging between Cape Cod and Central America.<P>Hotel Malabar reads as if Brendan Galvin merged the William Faulkner of As I Lay Dying and the Joseph Conrad of The Secret Agent with Elmore Leonard's dialogue and the imagery of Orson Welles' The Third Man. The result is a narrative poem that reads like a popular novel even as it displays the images and rhythms of a master poet.<P>This is the only contemporary book-length narrative poem that draws on detective fiction to tell its story. The setting is a Cape Cod hotel during a mid-1970s summer, and the poem unfolds through the monologues of five distinctive characters: an elderly Yankee "banana hand" who spent years in Central America as a plantation manager, three federal agents sent to discover his wartime activities there, and an Indian curandero who is the old man's source of medicines. The story — replete with tales within tales — draws the reader into its mysteries through the revelations of these five speakers.<P>As it moves relentlessly toward its conclusion, Hotel Malabar asks questions about human motivation, the nature of truth, and the consequences of secrecy and the willing fabrication of illusions, of a life lived in "a wilderness of mirrors".
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