Mule

A Novel of Moving Weight

By Tony D'Souza
(Mariner Books, Paperback, 9780547576718, 304pp.)

Publication Date: September 27, 2011

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Description

“Thanks to its wicked style and pacing, Mule lets me forget I’m reading serious literature while I follow its terrifying story into the land of the all-American damned.” — Walter Kirn, author of Up in the Air

Mule is swift, taut, and relentless, both a rip-roaring drug tale and a fascinating portrait of a decent human being whose morals slowly disintegrate under unbearable financial strain.” — Lauren Groff, author of The Monsters of Templeton

James and Kate are golden children of the late twentieth century, flush with opportunity. But an economic downturn and an unexpected pregnancy send them searching for a way to make do. A friend in California’s Siskiyou County grows prime-grade marijuana; if James transports just one load from Cali to Florida, he’ll pull down enough cash to survive for months. And so begins the life of a mule.
      A page-turning, Zeitgeist-capturing novel that plunges us into the criminal underworld with little chance to take a breath, Mule is about young people trying to make do in a moment when the American Dream they never had to believe in — because it was handed to them, fully wrapped and ready to go at the takeout window — suddenly vanishes from the menu.

“With adrenaline-infused sentences and a seat-gripping story line, Mule is a novel that illuminates contemporary American desperation, both its dangerous precipices and its thrilling, overwhelming freedom.” — Dean Bakopoulos, author of My American Unhappiness




About the Author

Tony D’Souza is the author of three novels, including the award-winning Whiteman. He has contributed to The New Yorker, Playboy, Esquire, Outside, Salon, Granta, McSweeney’s, O. Henry Prize Stories, Best American Fantasy, and elsewhere. A recipient of the Sue Kaufman Prize, Florida Gold and Silver Medals for fiction, and fellowships from the Guggenheim and the NEA, Tony was nominated for a National Magazine Award for coverage of Nicaragua’s Eric Volz murder trial and spent three years in Africa with the Peace Corps.




Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com

CONVERSATION STARTERS

  1. “‘So I’ve got my dreams,’ Darren said, ‘and unlike you right now, I also have the means to pursue them’” (p. 24). What are James’ dreams? What is he working toward? How does it compare to your definition of the “American dream”? 




Praise For Mule

"An acutely detailed page-turner..."
--Entertainment Weekly

"[D'Souza's] authorial voice is sharp and crisp, eschewing flowery prose for a hard-hitting narrative style that perfectly suits the page-turning, drugfueled tale. Fans of Toby Young and Max Barry and those who follow D’Souza’s magazine work will greatly enjoy the timely, witty, fast-paced Mule."
--Booklist"

A smart and bracing ground-level exploration of the drug trade."
--Kirkus

 

"Mule is the sort of novel I love: it solves nothing but explains everything. It also, thanks to its wicked style and pacing, lets me forget I’m reading serious literature while I follow its terrifying story into the land of the all-American damned."
—Walter Kirn, author of Up in the Air

 

"Mule is swift, taut, and relentless, both a rip-roaring drug tale and a fascinating portrait of a decent human being whose morals slowly disintegrate under unbearable financial strain. Tony D'Souza proves, yet again, that he is an immensely clever storyteller with plenty of talent to spare."
—Lauren Groff, author of The Monsters of Templeton

"With adrenaline-infused sentences and a seat-gripping storyline, Tony D’Souza has written one of the first great novels to emerge from our perplexing, endless recession. A heartfelt tale of one family’s freefall, Mule is a novel that illuminates contemporary American desperation, both its dangerous precipices and its thrilling, overwhelming freedom."
—Dean Bakopoulos, author of My American Unhappiness

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