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Paul Theroux - Author

About the Author

Paul Theroux was born in Medford, Massachusetts in 1941 and published his first novel, Waldo, in 1967. His subsequent novels include The Family Arsenal, Picture Palace, The Mosquito Coast, O-Zone, Millroy the Magician, My Secret History, My Other Life, and, most recently, A Dead Hand. His highly acclaimed travel books include Riding the Iron Rooster, The Great Railway Bazaar, The Old Patagonian Express, Fresh Air Fiend, and Ghost Train to the Eastern Star. He divides his time between Cape Cod and the Hawaiian Islands.

 

Author photo © William Furniss

Featured books by Paul Theroux

Mother Land

Mother Land

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/11/2017

Everyone in Cape Cod thinks that Mother is a wonderful woman: pious, hard-working, frugal. Everyone except her husband and seven children. To them she is a selfish and petty tyrant -- endlessly comparing her many living children to the one who died in childbirth, keeping a vice-like hold on her offspring even as they try to escape into adulthood. Welcome to Mother Land: a suffocating kingdom of parental narcissism.

ebook of the month
Deep South Four Seasons on Back Roads

Deep South Four Seasons on Back Roads

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/09/2015

In Deep South he turns his gaze to a region much closer to his home. Travelling through North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Arkansas he writes of the stunning landscapes he discovers - the deserts, the mountains, the Mississippi - and above all, the lives of the people he meets.

The Mosquito Coast

The Mosquito Coast

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback Release Date: 06/08/2015

Allie Fox is going to re-create the world. Abominating the cops, crooks, junkies and scavengers of modern America, he abandons civilisation and takes the family to live in the Honduran jungle. There his tortured, messianic genius keeps them alive, his hoarse tirades harrying them through a diseased and dirty Eden towards unimaginable darkness.

ebook of the month
The Lower River

The Lower River

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/04/2013

Award-winning writer Paul Theroux draws upon personal experience of living in Malawi in his eye-opening novel, about one man's return to an Africa he no longer recognises, The Lower River . Decades ago Massachusetts salesman Ellis Hock spent four years in Africa - and the continent has never left him. So when his wife walks out and his business goes belly up, Ellis turns back to the one place in which he briefly found happiness. Yet returning to the village of Malabo shocks him. The school he built is a ruin. The people he remembers are poor, apathetic, hostile. The country labours as if under a great, invisible burden. However, Ellis is determined. This is his escape, a paradise regained. But escape can be a snare, a trap for the unwary... The Lower River is a hypnotic, compelling and brilliant return to a terrain no one has ever written better about than Paul Theroux: the tragic stage of modern Africa, AIDS-ravaged and despairing in the face of creeping consumerism, greed and dependence.

ebook of the month
Sunrise with Seamonsters Travels and Discoveries 1964-1984

Sunrise with Seamonsters Travels and Discoveries 1964-1984

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback Release Date: 03/02/2011

Sunrise with Sea Monsters is Paul Theroux's immensely entertaining collection of his shorter writings, ranging from sketches to critical essays. Each piece marks a new 'confrontation with the world' and throws new light on the political and social climate of diverse cultures such as those of New York, Singapore, Ireland and Malawi. Others give a lively portrayal of the people Theroux has met or books and landscapes which have inspired him.

ebook of the month
My Other Life A Novel

My Other Life A Novel

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback Release Date: 03/02/2011

The fictional narrator of these memoirs, a man of many different guises, has reconstructed his past, giving it wit and life, tragedy and pathos, and imposed an order on it through careful editing. Life, it seems, has no apparent plot and so it can seem messier than fiction; sometimes it seems as if our hero is leading many different, separate lives ...

ebook of the month

Other books by Paul Theroux

On the Plain of Snakes A Mexican Road Trip

On the Plain of Snakes A Mexican Road Trip

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Hardback Release Date: 24/10/2019

The master of contemporary travel writing, Paul Theroux, immerses himself in the beautiful and troubled heart of modern Mexico Nogales is a border town caught between Mexico and the United States of America. A forty-foot steel fence runs through its centre, separating the prosperous US side from the impoverished Mexican side. It is a fascinating site of tension, now more than ever, as the town fills with hopeful border crossers and the deportees who have been caught and brought back. And it is here that Paul Theroux will begin his journey into the culturally rich but troubled heart of modern Mexico. Moving through the deserts just south of the Arizona border, Theroux finds a place brimming with charm, yet visibly marked by both the US border patrol looming to the north and mounting discord from within. Attending local language and culinary schools, driving through the country and meeting its people, Paul Theroux gets under the skin of Mexico. From the writer praised for his 'curiosity and affection for humanity in all its forms' (New York Times Book Review), On The Plain of Snakes is an urgent and mesmerising exploration of a region in conflict. Praise for Paul Theroux: 'As cool as Maugham... as observant, intuitive, wry, inventive and eloquent as Graham Greene' Sunday Times 'Theroux's work remains the standard by which other travel writing must be judged' Observer 'The world's most perceptive travel writer' Daily Mail 'One of the most accomplished and worldly-wise writers of his generation' The Times

On the Plain of Snakes A Mexican Road Trip

On the Plain of Snakes A Mexican Road Trip

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/10/2019

The master of contemporary travel writing, Paul Theroux, immerses himself in the beautiful and troubled heart of modern Mexico Nogales is a border town caught between Mexico and the United States of America. A forty-foot steel fence runs through its centre, separating the prosperous US side from the impoverished Mexican side. It is a fascinating site of tension, now more than ever, as the town fills with hopeful border crossers and the deportees who have been caught and brought back. And it is here that Paul Theroux will begin his journey into the culturally rich but troubled heart of modern Mexico. Moving through the deserts just south of the Arizona border, Theroux finds a place brimming with charm, yet visibly marked by both the US border patrol looming to the north and mounting discord from within. Attending local language and culinary schools, driving through the country and meeting its people, Paul Theroux gets under the skin of Mexico. From the writer praised for his 'curiosity and affection for humanity in all its forms' (New York Times Book Review), On The Plain of Snakes is an urgent and mesmerising exploration of a region in conflict. Praise for Paul Theroux: 'As cool as Maugham... as observant, intuitive, wry, inventive and eloquent as Graham Greene' Sunday Times 'Theroux's work remains the standard by which other travel writing must be judged' Observer 'The world's most perceptive travel writer' Daily Mail 'One of the most accomplished and worldly-wise writers of his generation' The Times

Figures in a Landscape People and Places

Figures in a Landscape People and Places

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/04/2019

A rich feast of travel writing, literary essays and fascinating interviews from Sunday Times bestselling travel author Paul Theroux 'Wonderful... Evidence of both the breadth of Theroux's interests and his skill in bringing them to life' Sunday Times Culture Drawing together a fascinating body of writing from over 14 years of work, Figures in a Landscape ranges from profiles of cultural icons (Oliver Sacks, Elizabeth Taylor, Robin Williams) to intimate personal remembrances; from thrilling adventures in Africa to literary writings from Theroux's rich and expansive personal reading. Collectively these pieces offer a fascinating portrait of the author himself, his extraordinary life, restless and ever-curious mind. 'Theroux's work remains the standard by which other travel writing must be judged' Observer 'The world's most perceptive travel writer' Daily Mail

Mother Land

Mother Land

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/09/2018

'Downright hilarious... Like watching a slow-motion car crash. Theroux possesses a fabulously nasty sense of humour' Stephen King A riotously dysfunctional portrait of one all-American family and its diabolical matriarch - by one of America's most acclaimed writers Everyone in Cape Cod thinks that Mother is a wonderful woman: pious, hard-working, frugal. Everyone except her husband and seven children. To them she is a selfish and petty tyrant -- endlessly comparing her many living children to the one who died in childbirth, keeping a vice-like hold on her offspring even as they try to escape into adulthood. Welcome to Mother Land: a suffocating kingdom of parental narcissism. This is an engrossing, hilarious and heartbreaking portrait of a modern family -- the bickering, the conspiracies, and the drive to overcome the painful ties that bind. 'Brilliantly depicts characters in pinpoint prickly prose' Guardian 'Funny and wonderfully mean spirited' Saturday Review 'The family dynamic has been rendered exceptionally well' Herald

Riding the Rails with Paul Theroux

Riding the Rails with Paul Theroux

Author: Paul Theroux Format: eBook Release Date: 19/06/2018

Riding the Rails with Paul Theroux Three quintessential works from the legendary Paul Theroux are collected here for the first time. Let the master take you by train through Asia in 1975's The Great Railway Bazaar, then crossthe Americas in 1979's The Old Patagonian Express, and round out your journey through Eastern Europe in 2008's Ghost Train to the Eastern Star.The Great Railway Bazaar: By Train Through AsiaThe Great Railway Bazaar, Theroux's strange, unique, and hugely entertaining railway odyssey has become a modern classic of travel literature. Here he recounts his early adventures on an unusual grand tour. Asia's fabled trainsthe Orient Express, the Khyber Pass Local, the Frontier Mail, the Golden Arrow to Kuala Lumpur, the Mandalay Express, the Trans-Siberian Expressare the stars of a journey that takes him on a loop eastbound from London's Victoria Station to Tokyo Central, then back from Japan on the Trans-Siberian Express. Brimming with Theroux's signature humor and wry observations, this engrossing chronicle is essential reading for both the ardent adventurer and the armchair traveler.The Old Patagonian Express: By Train Through the Americas Starting with a rush-hour subway ride to South Station in Boston to catch the Lake Shore Limited to Chicago, Theroux winds up on the poky Old Patagonian Express steam engine(';a kind of demented samovar on wheels'), which comes to a halt among cracked hills and thorn bushes in the southern reaches of Argentina. But with Theroux the souls he meets along the way matter most, like the monologuing Mr. Thornberry in Costa Rica, the bogus priest of Cali, and the blind Jorge Luis Borges, who delights in having Theroux read Robert Louis Stevenson to him.Ghost Train to the Eastern Star: On the Tracks of the Great Railway Bazaar Half a lifetime ago, Paul Theroux virtually invented the modern travel narrative by recounting his grand tour by train through Asia. In the decades since, the world he recorded in that book has undergone phenomenal change. The Soviet Union has collapsed and China has risen; India booms while Burma smothers under dictatorship; Vietnam flourishes in the aftermath of the havoc America was unleashing on it the last time Theroux passed through. And no one is better able to capture the texture, sights, smells, and sounds of that changing landscape than Theroux. His odyssey takes him from eastern Europe, still hung-over from communism, through tense but thriving Turkey into the Caucasus, where Georgia limps back toward feudalism while its neighbor Azerbaijan revels in oil-fueled capitalism. Theroux travels as the locals doby stifling train, rattletrap bus, illicit taxi, and mud-caked footencountering adventures only he could have: from the literary (sparring with the incisive Nobel laureate Orhan Pamuk) to the dissolute (surviving a week-long bender on the Trans-Siberian Railroad). And wherever he goes, his omnivorous curiosity and unerring eye for detail never fail to inspire, enlighten, and entertain.

Figures in a Landscape

Figures in a Landscape

Author: Paul Theroux Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 10/05/2018

Drawing together a fascinating body of writing from over 14 years of work, Figures in a Landscape ranges from profiles of cultural icons (Oliver Sacks, Elizabeth Taylor, Robin Williams) to intimate personal remembrances; from thrilling adventures in Africa to literary writings from Theroux's rich and expansive personal reading. Collectively these pieces offer a fascinating portrait of the author himself, his extraordinary life, restless and ever-curious mind. Figures in a Landscape is an essential addition to the wide-ranging Theroux canon, bound together by an extended mediation on the craft of writing itself, and driven by Theroux's constant quest for the authentic in a person or in a place.

Figures in a Landscape People and Places

Figures in a Landscape People and Places

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/05/2018

The Sunday Times bestseller Paul Theroux collects a rich feast of his writing and essays - from travel to personal memoir - published all together here for the first time Drawing together a fascinating body of writing from over 14 years of work, Figures in a Landscape ranges from profiles of cultural icons (Oliver Sacks, Elizabeth Taylor, Robin Williams) to intimate personal remembrances; from thrilling adventures in Africa to literary writings from Theroux's rich and expansive personal reading. Collectively these pieces offer a fascinating portrait of the author himself, his extraordinary life, restless and ever-curious mind.

Figures in a Landscape People and Places

Figures in a Landscape People and Places

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/05/2018

The Sunday Times bestseller Paul Theroux collects a rich feast of his writing and essays - from travel to personal memoir - published all together here for the first time Drawing together a fascinating body of writing from over 14 years of work, Figures in a Landscape ranges from profiles of cultural icons (Oliver Sacks, Elizabeth Taylor, Robin Williams) to intimate personal remembrances; from thrilling adventures in Africa to literary writings from Theroux's rich and expansive personal reading. Collectively these pieces offer a fascinating portrait of the author himself, his extraordinary life, restless and ever-curious mind.

Mother Land

Mother Land

Author: Paul Theroux Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 02/11/2017

Everyone in Cape Cod thinks that Mother is a wonderful woman: pious, hard-working, frugal. Everyone except her husband and seven children. To them she is a selfish and petty tyrant, endlessly comparing her many living children to the one who died in childbirth, keeping a vice-like hold on her offspring even as they try to escape into adulthood. Welcome to Mother Land: a suffocating kingdom of parental narcissism.

Mother Land

Mother Land

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/11/2017

Everyone in Cape Cod thinks that Mother is a wonderful woman: pious, hard-working, frugal. Everyone except her husband and seven children. To them she is a selfish and petty tyrant -- endlessly comparing her many living children to the one who died in childbirth, keeping a vice-like hold on her offspring even as they try to escape into adulthood. Welcome to Mother Land: a suffocating kingdom of parental narcissism.

ebook of the month
Mother Land

Mother Land

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/06/2017

A darkly hilarious portrait of one dysfunctional American family and its scheming matriarch Everyone in Cape Cod thinks that Mother is a wonderful woman: pious, hard-working, frugal. Everyone except her husband and seven children. To them she is a selfish and petty tyrant -- endlessly comparing her many living children to the one who died in childbirth, keeping a vice-like hold on her offspring even as they try to escape into adulthood. Welcome to Mother Land: a suffocating kingdom of parental narcissism. This is an engrossing, hilarious and heartbreaking portrait of a modern family -- the bickering, the conspiracies, and the drive to overcome the painful ties that bind.

The Old Patagonian Express

The Old Patagonian Express

Author: Paul Theroux Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 01/04/2016

The Old Patagonian Express tells of Paul Theroux's train journey down the length of North and South America. Beginning on Boston's subway, he depicts a voyage from ice-bound Massachusetts to the arid plateau of Argentina's most southerly tip. Shivering and sweating by turns as the temperature and altitude rise and plummet, he describes the people he encountered - the tedious Mr Thornberry in Limon and reading to the legendary blind writer, Jorge Luis Borges, in Buenos Aires.

Deep South Four Seasons on Back Roads

Deep South Four Seasons on Back Roads

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/03/2016

SUNDAY TIMES TOP TEN BESTSELLER Beloved travel writer Paul Theroux turns his attention to America, exploring the landscapes and communities of his homeland as an outsider for the first time For the past fifty years, Paul Theroux has travelled to the far corners of the earth - to China, India, Africa, the Pacific Islands, South America, Russia, and elsewhere - and brought them to life in his cool, exacting prose. In Deep South he turns his gaze to a region much closer to his home. Travelling through North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Arkansas, Paul Theroux writes of the stunning landscapes he discovers - the deserts, the mountains, the Mississippi - and above all, the lives of the people he meets. The South is a place of contradictions. There is the warm, open spirit of the soul food cafes, found in every town, no matter how small. There is the ruined grandeur of numberless ghostly towns, long abandoned by the industries that built them. There are the state gun shows and the close-knit,subtly forlorn tribe of people who attend and run them. Deep in the heart of his native country, Theroux discovers a land more profoundly foreign than anything he has previously experienced.

Deep South

Deep South

Author: Paul Theroux Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 03/09/2015

For the past fifty years, Paul Theroux has travelled to the far corners of the earth - to China, Africa, the Pacific Islands, Russia, and elsewhere. In Deep South he turns his gaze to a region much closer to his home. Travelling through North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Arkansas he writes of the stunning landscapes he discovers - the deserts, the mountains, the Mississippi - and above all, the lives of the people he meets.

Trenul-fantoma catre Rasarit

Trenul-fantoma catre Rasarit

Author: Paul Theroux Format: eBook Release Date: 11/08/2015

În septembrie 1973, Paul Theroux parasea gara londoneza Victoria pentru a porni într-o calatorie cu trenul de-a lungul Europei si Asiei, pâna în Japonia si înapoi. Dupa 33 de ani Theroux repeta aceasta aventura, observând cum s-au schimbat între timp atât zonele pe care le strabate din nou cu trenul, cât si el însusi. Trenul-fantoma catre Rasarit descrie noua calatorie, printr-o Europa de Est înca buimacita de comunism, prin tensionata, dar înfloritoarea Turcie, prin Caucaz, unde Georgia pare sa mearga înapoi spre feudalism, în timp ce Azerbaidjanul se desfata în capitalismul alimentat de petrol. În timpul voiajului, Paul Theroux are ocazia sa discute cu incisivul laureat al Premiului Nobel Orhan Pamuk si sa se plimbe prin Tokyo cu Haruki Murakami, dar si sa strabata singur strazile oraselor vizitate sau sa bea cot la cot cu oameni obisnuiti în expresul transsiberian.

The Mosquito Coast

The Mosquito Coast

Author: Paul Theroux Format: Paperback Release Date: 06/08/2015

Allie Fox is going to re-create the world. Abominating the cops, crooks, junkies and scavengers of modern America, he abandons civilisation and takes the family to live in the Honduran jungle. There his tortured, messianic genius keeps them alive, his hoarse tirades harrying them through a diseased and dirty Eden towards unimaginable darkness.

ebook of the month