Thursday, July 28, 2011

Dr De Marr, Paul Theroux

Posted by lea at 4:30 PM
I chose Paul Theroux for The Great Library Challenge T author because he's one of those authors you hear about but (in my case anyway) have never read. 

Dr De Marr is an eerie novella with a very creepy cover and several even more creepy illustrations throughout.

The story is about very short identical twins, George and Gerold De Marr, who are bound to each other by intense hatred and a desire for the other's death. When their parents pass away, they finally sever the invisible umbilical cord between them and live their lives free of each other for decades, until one day, George suddenly appears on Gerald's doorstep out of the blue. 

Shortly after, Gerald finds George dead in a chair upstairs and soon begins to unravel the seams of his mysterious secret life. He finds that George has been posing as a wealthy doctor, and soon enough, he assumes this false identity to enjoy its benefits. But of course, the very things that George was running from catch up with Gerald and he finds himself very quickly out of his depth.

Theroux writes with an eerie absence of emotion that casts shadows on every page. The handful of characters that appear in the pantomime are hard to read as they all seem to have their own agenda, of which you're constantly left in the dark.

It's quite a horrid story, adeptly told, with the punchy circular logic of a good short story. But personally, I like my stories with a little more light.

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