- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Mariner Books; Reprint edition (June 1, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0618658963
- ISBN-13: 978-0618658961
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 153 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #352,312 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Mosquito Coast Reprint Edition
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Charlie, the narrator, tells the story progressively from the time "Father" uproots this American family only to set them down in the virgin jungles of Honduras. The father is a genius of sorts as well as a Harvard dropout who believes America has become "Hell" in many ways with its capitalism and poison. The father is undoubtedly a very smart man and his innovations and inventions throughout the book are truly believable and amazing. Theroux has a true knack for imagery.
Of course, "Mother" and the other children look up to their father and believe everything he says. AS the novel progresses, the father spirals further and further into his own self-made paranoid madness while dragging his family along for the ride.
This book is something of a nail biter, though it has its funny moments. Some of the dialogue between the children is really quite humorous. They call each other names like "spackoid," "crummo," and "thicko," which is of course a telltale sign that it was written in the eighties. Nevertheless, as the book nears the end, some severely twisted events occur, events that you will likely hope for and be repulsed by at the same time.
It is slightly reminiscent of "Lord of the Flies" in that it shows what isolation from the familiar can do to people. Honduras becomes a most Godless place for the family known as "The Foxes."
As far as I'm concerned, the story reads more like a crazy truth than fiction. The dialogues Theroux gives to the natives in the book are very realistic and the situations and emotions are so vivid that you will not be able to put the book down. At least this was the case for me.
After having read "The Mosquito Coast," I will definitely read other novels by this author. He is an ingenious writer.
The end will surely have you screaming for more, but, if you are one of those light at heart readers who get sore when the ending isn't happy (i.e. unrealistic) I suggest something else. This one may give you nightmares and a certain doubt in humanity.
To sum it all up, it is dark in more ways than one and it involves what happens to the impressionable mind of young Charlie when he is made to live day to day in squalor and to follow the laws of a father who is slowly going insane. Don't miss this one!
Most recent customer reviews
13 year old Charlie Fox narrates the account of his family's exodus from Massachusetts - where his...Read more