About this title:
The Woman and the Ape is the story of a unique and unforgettable couple--Madelene and Erasmus. Madelene is the wife of Adam Burden, a distinguished behavioral scientist. Erasmus--the unlikely prince--is a 300-pound ape. Brought to the Burdens' London home after escaping from animal smugglers, Erasmus is discovered to be a highly intelligent anthropoid ape, the closest thing yet to a human being. Madelene decides to save Erasmus, and between them blossoms a profound affection as deep as any human relationship. A fable for our time, The Woman and the Ape poses searching questions about the nature of love, freedom, and humanity.
Peter Høeg, author of the international bestseller Smilla's Sense of Snow, has written a fable that explores our human status as inhabitants of paradise lost, and the trade-off between civilization and freedom. The story begins with a captured ape, dubbed Erasmus, a specimen of an apparently new species with a cognitive ability that seems to rival human capacities. Erasmus is rescued from scientific study and experimentation by Madelene, whose husband, Adam, is the zoo director. Escaping to an Eden-like nature reserve, Madelene finds an empathy with Erasmus that develops into a wild sexual liberation. When the pair emerge from Eden to try to stop Adam continuing researches on others of Erasmus' kind, paradise dissolves, and civilization wins out. Read an interview with Peter Høeg.
From the Inside Flap:
From the internationally acclaimed author of Smilla's Sense of Snow comes a dazzling leap of imagination--a tale as sensitive as it is suspenseful, as profound as it is provocative.
Madelene, the beautiful, lonely, alcoholic wife of behavioral scientist Adam Burden, is pacing the confines of their opulent London home when she comes upon her husband's secret captive. Erasmus is a 300-pound ape who, if rigorous tests prove him a hitherto unknown superhominid, will be the ruthless Adam's ultimate trophy. But Madelene, intoxicated by their encounter, sets out to unravel the web of corruption that ensnares this intelligent creature. And together, blurring the boundary between human and animal, she and Erasmus venture into an Eden of freedom and love...only to find their future endangered by a species who would let greed and ambition destroy their fragile world.
Witty, erotic, magical, The Woman and the Ape is a tour de force, one that offers daring new insight into out times, our illusions, and our hearts.
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