Paris Trout

Paris Trout

4.6 8
by Pete Dexter
     
 

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Pete Dexter’s National Book Award–winning tour de force tells the mesmerizing story of a shocking crime that shatters lives and exposes the hypocrisies of a small Southern town.
 
The time and place: Cotton Point, Georgia, just after World War II. The event: the murder of a fourteen-year-old black girl by a respected white citizen

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Overview

Pete Dexter’s National Book Award–winning tour de force tells the mesmerizing story of a shocking crime that shatters lives and exposes the hypocrisies of a small Southern town.
 
The time and place: Cotton Point, Georgia, just after World War II. The event: the murder of a fourteen-year-old black girl by a respected white citizen named Paris Trout, who feels he’s done absolutely nothing wrong. As a trial looms, the crime eats away at the social fabric of Cotton Point, through its facade of manners and civility. Trout’s indifference haunts his defense lawyer; his festering paranoia warps his timid, quiet wife; and Trout himself moves closer to madness as he becomes obsessed with his cause—and his vendettas.
 
Praise for Paris Trout
 
“A masterpiece, complex and breathtaking . . . [Pete] Dexter portrays his characters with marvelous sharpness.”Los Angeles Times
 
“A psychological spellbinder that will take your breath away and probably interfere with your sleep.”The Washington Post Book World
 
“Dexter’s brilliant understanding of the Deep South has allowed him to capture much of its essence—its bitter class distinctions, its violence, its strangeness—with a fidelity of detail and an ear for speech that I have rarely encountered since Flannery O’Connor.”—William Styron
 
“Dexter’s powerfully emotional novel doesn’t have any brakes. Hang on, because you won’t be able to stop until the finish.”Chicago Tribune

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“A masterpiece, complex and breathtaking . . . [Pete] Dexter portrays his characters with marvelous sharpness.”Los Angeles Times
 
“A psychological spellbinder that will take your breath away and probably interfere with your sleep.”The Washington Post Book World
 
“Dexter’s brilliant understanding of the Deep South has allowed him to capture much of its essence—its bitter class distinctions, its violence, its strangeness—with a fidelity of detail and an ear for speech that I have rarely encountered since Flannery O’Connor.”—William Styron
 
“Dexter’s powerfully emotional novel doesn’t have any brakes. Hang on, because you won’t be able to stop until the finish.”Chicago Tribune
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
An expertly crafted and bleakly fascinating tale of social conflict and madness in the deep South, this novel centers on the eponymous Paris Trout, owner of a general store and other property in Cotton Point, Ga., during the years just after World War II. A cunning, violent man, with deep roots in the community, Trout has become an economic predator of the town's poor blacks by running a loan service for them out of the safe in his store's back room. The tensions between Trout and the blacks reaches a critical point when Trout, along with a strong-arm goon, murders an 11-year-old black girl and badly injures a black woman while collecting a debt. Into the vortex of this storm are drawn a number of other characters, highlighting the racial and social divisions of Cotton Point: lawyer and gentleman Harry Seagraves, who is repelled by the case; Paris's wife Hannah, brutalized by her husband and in powerful psychological bondage to him; and Carl Bonner, a young, idealistic lawyer who seesaws between his past in the town and his recently acquired sense of being an outsider in its circumscribed society. Trout's murder trial forces Cotton Point to face some dark truths, while setting in motion a chain of events that lead to a crescendo of violence. Dexter (Deadwood, God's Pocket) is a deft and economical storyteller and a cruel but observant chronicler of deep South customs and characters, with something of a Faulknerian feeling for the bullying violence that can lay at the heart of an inbred small town. (June)
Richard Eder
"A masterpiece, complex investigating." -- The Los Angeles Times

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780812987386
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/04/2014
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
750,079
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.80(d)

What People are saying about this

Willie Morris
"An eloquent, powerful book by a superbly accomplished writer....I could not put it down. One of the best novels to come out of the American South in a long time."

Meet the Author

Pete Dexter is the author of the National Book Award–winning novel Paris Trout as well as Spooner, Paper Trails, God’s Pocket, Deadwood, Brotherly Love, and Train. He has been a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News and the Sacramento Bee, and has contributed to many magazines, including Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Playboy. His screenplays include Rush and Mulholland Falls. Dexter was born in Michigan and raised in Georgia, Illinois, and eastern South Dakota. He lives on an island off the coast of Washington.

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