Title: A Touch Of Midas
Publication Date: 1958
Edition: 1st Edition.
New York. 1958. Coward-McCann. 1st American Edition. Very Good In Slightly Worn Dustjacket. 288 pages. hardcover. Jacket design by Ben Feder. keywords: Literature Caribbean Guyana Black. inventory # 17122. FROM THE PUBLISHER - A vivid novel of the treacherous South American jungles where men risk their lives for the prize of diamonds and gold. This is the story of Shark, born in a native village, who acquires great wealth in the jungle, only to lose it all in a city which he can neither understand not conquer. Young Aaron Smart, an orphan, is nicknamed Shark because he has small white teeth and a shark grin. He grows up in a native village on the coast of British Guiana, dividing his time between work in a road-gang and wandering through the savannahs and swamps dreaming of the wonderful life his father led as a diamond prospector. Then one day a mysterious white man appears and decrees that he shall be educated. Education frees Shark from the village. Apprenticed to a doctor, he is seduced by his masterís daughter and learns the secret of his fatherís death. This prompts him to run away and join the Ďpork-knockers,í the men who work the diamond mines deep in the up-country jungles. Thereafter incident follows exciting incident. Shark has hardly entered the strange, violent world of the pork knockers before it becomes apparent that he has inherited his fatherís lucky touch. He makes a fortune in diamonds, becomes a fabled figure among the miners, until his name is even woven into the Blues they sing around the campfires. He has staunch friends in Bullah, the ex-boxer storekeeper, and Belle, the beautiful Georgetown prostitute who follows him into the jungle. Suddenly grown rich and full of good intentions, Shark takes his friends back to Georgetown. But the city has seen successful pork knockers arrive before, and knows how to corrupt them. Sharkís life becomes one of pathetic profligacy. He tries to buy his way into a white manís world, spending his money wantonly on women, a huge house, an equipage drawn by white horses in which he drives to the races. At the climax of his career he is overtaken by ruin. A TOUCH OF MIDAS introduces a writer of exceptional talent. Written with great distinction, full of lilting musical dialogue, it is in essence the study of the growth and failure of a man, whom in his simplicity and primitive emotions the reader grows to love. Mr. Carew brings marvelously alive the startling, polyglot, tropical world through which his hero moves. His first book recalls the work of B. Traven and V. G. Reid in its epic quality. Very Good In Slightly Worn Dustjacket. Bookseller Inventory # 17122
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