Knopf Publishing Group, Hardcover, 9781400042326, 205pp.
Publication Date: January 15, 2013
Thomas Sanchez’s American Tropic is a heart-racing ecological thriller that showcases today’s headline issues. Sanchez’s first Key West novel, Mile Zero, was hailed by The Washington Post Book World as a “holy terror of a book of immense power and passion,” acclaimed by The New York Times Book Review as “dazzling,” and lauded by Vanity Fair as “mythmaking and magisterial.” Now, Sanchez returns again to America’s famous southernmost continental point, Key West.
This exotic island city in the Florida Keys is being terrorized by horrific murders committed by a mysterious voodoo assassin. With each new kill, it becomes clear that the skeleton-clad executioner has an ecological agenda. The novel propels us through a complex maze populated by rapacious developers, ruthless scammers, and common folk engaged in heroic acts to save their community.
The characters, from the defenders of America’s only continental reef to the destroyers of marine life, are all swept up in this torrent of horrors. Everyone dreads being the killer’s next victim as the clock counts down to the end of hurricane season and the final dramatic explosion of fear and rage.
With canny perception and striking revelations, American Tropic illuminates a world of dark desires, hidden truths, and colliding destinies.
“[This] power-packed thriller. . . . rises to the level of ferocious dramatic polemic against some of the worst crimes against nature—and, by extension, humanity.”
—Alan Cheuse, San Francisco Chronicle
“American Tropic propels its cast into a murky world of murder and consequence, with rapid-fire vignettes, an expanding collage of personalities, and a thickening mystery to compel the reader toward a satisfying finale.”
—Dimitri Nasrallah, The Toronto Star
“The print equivalent of a character-driven film by Robert Altman. . . . A swift-moving, entertaining book with a timely message.”
—Doug Childers, Richmond Times-Dispatch
“A creepy tale of Florida noir. . . . American Tropic has a fever-dream intensity and a pace as breathless as a steamy island night.”
—Colette Bancroft, Tampa Bay Times
“There are two elements that make American Tropic worth reading. The first is Sanchez’s rare ability to peel back the flora and fauna of his real-world settings in order to get into the cracks and crevices of scenery and backgrounds that most people notice fleetingly—if at all—out of their side windows as they move from Point A to Point B. The second is the power of his prose, which, after four decades of writing, remains undiminished.”
"A bold eco-thriller of wild truth and poetry destined to take its place alongside The Monkey Wrench Gang."
--Philip Caputo, author of Acts of Faith and A Rumor of War