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A Dead Hand
A Dead Hand: A Crime in Calcutta | Paul Theroux
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A travel writer is drawn into a strange criminal case, and an even stranger romantic affair, in a novel that brings India brilliantly, blazingly to life (The Washington Post). When Jerry Delfont, an aimless, blocked travel writer, receives a letter from an American philanthropist, Mrs. Merrill Unger, he is intrigued. She informs him about a scandal, involving an Indian friend of her sons. Who is the dead boy, found on the floor of a cheap hotel room? How and why did he die? And what is Jerry to make of a patch of carpet, and a package containing a human hand? Jerry is swiftly captivated by the beautiful, mysterious Mrs. Ungerand revived by her tantric massagesbut the circumstances surrounding the dead boy cause him increasingly to doubt the womans motives and the exact nature of her philanthropy. Without much to go on, Jerry pursues answers from the teeming streets of Calcutta to Uttar Pradesh. It is a dark and twisted trail of obsession and need. From the author of The Great Railway Bazaar, A Dead Hand is offers an abundance of richly drawn characters . . . Theroux has used his travel writers eye and ear and his novelists imagination to craft a tense, disturbing, funny and horrifying book around all of them (San Francisco Chronicle). The real pleasure is Therouxs talent for rendering place and his irreverent comments on everything from the British royals to pop culture, aging, and yes, the venerable Mother Teresa. Publishers Weekly
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Travel writing has the potential to lend a #helpinghand to potential travelers, but travel fiction needs to make sure that it gets the culture of the destination right, and isn't looking at it through a distorted lens. I couldn't really tell if the tagged novel is critiquing this aspect as its travel writer MC navigates a murder mystery in Calcutta or something that should be criticized for that reason. The lovely photo is from the film Repulsion.

erzascarletbookgasm The photo 😨 2y
batsy That image is my twitter header image. One of my favourite films. Unfortunate, considering the director. 2y
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Billypar @batsy Yes- it's one if those rare just about perfect films, isn't it? Polanski films are generally excellent.... Polanski himself is another story 🤢 2y
Reggie That pic reminds me of Labrynth. And speaking of Polanski, I love the 9th Gate. 2y
Billypar @Reggie It's been so long since I've seen Labyrinth- I remember the sign with the hands pointing in opposite ways. Ninth Gate is actually one I haven't seen- I should check that out. I remember the trailer looking on the scary side. 2y
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