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My Other Life

Theroux, Paul

879 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 039582527X / ISBN 13: 9780395825273
Published by Houghton Mifflin, Boston, MA, 1996
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About this Item

Fine in a fine DJ; SIGNED BY THE AUTHOR on the title page; 1.6 x 9.1 x 6.6 Inches; 456 p.; Signed by Author. Bookseller Inventory # 32899

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Bibliographic Details

Title: My Other Life

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin, Boston, MA

Publication Date: 1996

Binding: Hardcover; First Printing

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: First Edition

About this title


Life, to the hero of My Other Life, has no apparent plot, so it can seem messier than fiction--sometimes it appears that he is leading many separate lives. The only connecting strand is that they all involve the same person. The fictional narrator of these memoirs, a man of different guises, be it Pavel Medved, Paulie, or Paul Theroux, has reconstructed his past, giving it wit and life, tragedy and pathos, and imposed an order on it through careful editing. Inordinately fond of train travel, he takes us on a journey over a career spanning thirty years and distills it into poignant episodes. From his early education by his eccentric Uncle Hal, an unlikely author and lover of dog biscuits, we are taken through Theroux's years as a fledgling novelist in literary London, under the wing of the rapacious Lady Max, to his grief at finding himself alone again, at age fifty, in the town of his youth. With enormous insight and self-knowledge Theroux divulges his belief in secrets: the fake occup


Prolific and popular writer Paul Theroux turns himself on his ear in My Other Life, the "story of a life I could have lived had things been different," as told by another Paul Theroux. The book, arranged in sections that resemble stories more than chapters, traces a life that at times looks quite a bit like Theroux's real one; at other times not at all. He treads the familiar ground of his Peace Corps days in Africa that some readers will recall from My Secret History. The story then careens through Singapore, London, marriage, writing, family, and divorce. And it is not only Theroux who is a walking contradiction in this work; other characters explore the notion of two lives, giving the sections a unifying subject and a resounding theme.

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