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Mortals by Norman Rush

In Mortals by Norman Rush, Ray Finch is still obsessively in love with his wife, Iris, after 17 years of marriage. Set in 1992, Ray is also a CIA agent in Botswana working undercover as an English teacher in a private school. He asks his CIA chief for the assignment of watching the black holisitic physician, Davis Morel, who has come to Botswana to remove them from the yoke of Christianity, when Finch finds out that Iris has been seeing him for psychoanalysis and she admits an attraction for the doctor. His chief, however, orders him to watch Samuel Kerekang, a charismatic native whom Finch feels an affinity for. Finch decides to spy on both men. A violent insurrection in the north of the country brings them all together in a way that will change all their worlds. This new novel from Norman Rush (who won the National Book Award for Mating) explores the themes of power, religion, rebellion, and contending versions of liberation and love. Mortals has received mixed reviews, but the New York Observer says "For readers hankering after a novel of ideas, it doesn't get much better than this."
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New York Magazine review
by John Homans

New York Times review
by Michiko Kakutani

The New Yorker review
by John Updike

The Telegraph review
by Julia Flynn

The New Republic review
by James Wood

New York Times review
by John Leonard

Christian Science Monitor
review by Ron Charles

The Guardian review
by Christopher Hope

Sydney Morning Herald
review by Andrew Reimer

San Francisco Chronicle
review by David Kipen

Norman Rush
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