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Once the safest, most prosperous place on earth, the United States has become sparsely populated and chaotically unstable. Across the country, families have traveled toward the one hope left: passage on a ship to Europe. As Franklin Lopez makes his way towards the ocean, he finds Margaret, a sick woman shunned to die in isolation. Tentatively, the two join forces, heading towards their future. With striking prose and a deep understanding of the American ethos, Jim Crace, one of our most consistently ambitious writers, creates in The Pesthouse a masterful tale of the human drive to endure.
“A suspenseful road novel. . . . Crace's mordant humor shines darkly. . . .a meditation on some of the deepest questions about America.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review
“A cracking adventure story. . . . Crace pulls off a transcendent ending that offers a biting commentary on the ongoing American experiment.” —Entertainment Weekly
“Throughout [The Pesthouse], a delicate, touching shy romance blossoms….Crace is a writer about plain things, but he writes about them in a way that's both startling and subtle, a shimmering surface over still depths.” —Washington Post Book World
“Graceful and haunting. . . . Crace is the coldest of writers, and the tenderest.” —New York Times
“A writer of hallucinatory skill.” —John Updike