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The Curve of the World : A Novel by Marcus…
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The Curve of the World : A Novel

by Marcus Stevens

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Here we have the story of a man held hostage in the Congo after a plane crash strands him and all his fellow passengers in a remote spot. Lewis, our protaganist, takes off into the jungle when the captors let their guard down - never mind that the release of the hostages is in the works.

Lewis runs, gets lost, falls ill, is almost killed. He's running hard from something - perhaps his marriage, which seems brittle enough. A native boy, Kofi, saves him, and after a time of recovery, Lewis feels he must go back and save Kofi in turn. Here Lewis's journey heals, becomes moral, redeems. After rescuing Kofi, he deserves to return to his family: his wife Helen and their blind son, Shane. At the end, Lewis lies in a hospital bed and sees Kofi and Shane on the balcony. Helen's hand rests on his shoulder; she doesn't realize he's awake.

Pregnant with moral meaning and vivid action, some of it life-threatening, "The Curve of the World" recounts the life-changing and life-saving journey of a man in need of a new start. You won't be sorry you picked this up. ( )
  LukeS | Apr 2, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0743470826, Paperback)

Marcus Stevens's debut novel, The Curve of the World, opens on a cinematic note: An Air France flight rapidly descends over the dense African landscape. The cockpit fills with smoke. Passengers brace for an emergency landing. Although the unlikely premise of this adventure tale--an American Coca-Cola businessman named Lewis Burke is lost in the rainforests of the Congo; his estranged wife and blind 7-year-old son fly to Africa to rescue him--sounds straight out of Hollywood, the story itself is surprisingly well written, unfolding with the grim beauty of a modern-day Heart of Darkness. Even Lewis's inevitable bout with malaria and the attentions of an elderly ndoki (witch) seem believable, set against the author's deft depictions of war-ravaged villages, the poverty and resourcefulness of the rural Congolese, and the complicated politics of the region. Stevens is less sure-handed where ordinary human relations are concerned. He underestimates the caution of mothers (it is hard to believe that Lewis's wife's own elderly mother urges her to go to Africa to find Lewis, and harder still to imagine the young woman bringing her handicapped child to a war zone) and overestimates the kindness of strangers. This is a gripping story nonetheless and a complex, accomplished debut. --Regina Marler

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:31 -0400)

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"After his plane makes an emergency landing in a remote area in the Congo basin and rebels seize the aircraft, Lewis, a New York businessman, flees into the rainforest. Suddenly he's lost in a world where no rules apply and with no apparent way out. As he struggles to survive in the unrelenting heat, battling thirst and hunger, he confronts his darkest fears and his greatest disappointments: his crumbling marriage; his distant relationship with his seven-year-old son, Shane; and the lack of meaning in his life." "When his wife, Helen, discovers that he has disappeared, she makes the daring decision to search for him in Africa. As she and Shane trek upriver into the forbidding forest, Shane's visions and dreams of his father give her hope. But just as Lewis cannot find his way out, Helen is thwarted at every turn by the military conflict raging around them. While she searches for clues, Lewis is rescued by a young Congolese boy, who takes him deeper into the jungle and toward a side of himself he thought he'd lost."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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