My Secret History
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Brilliantly written, erotically charged, My Secret History is Paul Theroux's tour de force. It is the story of Andre Parent, a writer, a world traveller, a lover of every kind of woman he chances to meet in a life as varied as a man can lead.
It begins with his days as a Massachusetts altar boy, when his first furtive sexual encounter introduces him to the thrills of leading a double life. As a teenaged lifeguard, Andre finds himself caught between the attentions of a beautiful young student and an amorous older woman. Soon he is in Africa, where the local women are numerous, easy, and free. And as the boy becomes a man he turns his attention to writing, which brings him fame, and a wife, who may finally cause him to know himself.
But not before he sets up his most dangerous secret life, one that any man might envy, but that could cost Andre Parent the delicate balance that makes him who he is.
Father Flynn, who were very skinny—Adam’s apples, popping eyes, narrow ankles—and they were full of talk. “More toast, Betty,” Father Hanratty said to Mrs. Flaherty. “Father Furty tells us you’ve got a great appetite. But what does he know about anything? He’s a foreigner!” Father Furty was sipping coffee and smoking his first Fatima of the day. “He’s from New Jersey,” Father Flynn said. “God’s country,” Father Furty said. “Ah, you reminded me!” Father Flynn said, and laughed and shook his
that stuff in London, you know.” She went ahead. “I’m going to look at the marble screens.” “Aren’t you tired of sightseeing?” “Not yet. I want to finish looking at this place. I don’t want to have to come back here tomorrow. That’s for somewhere else—the mosque, I think.” Another postcard seller approached her and began gabbling. Jenny stared at him and in a level voice she said, “Bugger off.” The next day we met Indoo at the bar of the hotel. He looked rather stunned, and I wondered
shovel snow. My brother-in-law’s got a car wash. He’s looking for a manager. What about you?” Larry said, “I was just thinking. I worked in a bakery last winter. It sucked. What about you, Parent?” “College,” I said, looking up from The Flowers of Evil. They didn’t reply just then, but after a while Larry said, “You got the right idea. Get an education.” “One thing’s for shit-sure,” Muzzaroll said, “I ain’t going in no fucking army.” “Anyway they don’t take faggots,” Larry said. Muzzaroll
I said. “Captain works for me. Don’t keep giving him orders. If you don’t like it here, find another place.” “It’s okay here,” Rockwell said. “But I sometimes wonder if that guy washes.” “He’s a muslim. He washes more often than you do.” “Yeah,” he said doubtfully. “Five times a day.” This impressed Rockwell. “Bodily hygiene is real important.” He washed his own floor, he scrubbed his own clothes, he disinfected the bathroom every day, he hung a container of chemicals in the cistern that
mention her father. She said, “Tonight I will come to your hut. It will be easy. You are sleeping with my two small brothers.” I was shocked. First the father’s Are you saved? and then the daughter’s plan to make love in the same room where her two brothers were sleeping, the little naked boys, Redson and Walton. Seeing that I was hesitant she said, “You were once such a dog that you took me and that little girl home with you and you screwed both of us.” That was true, but it seemed a long