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Millroy the Magician Paperback – 24 Nov 1994

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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New edition edition (24 Nov. 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140235280
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140235289
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 2.1 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 765,204 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Paul Theroux was born and educated in the United States. After graduating from university in 1963, he travelled first to Italy and then to Africa, where he worked as a Peace Corps teacher at a bush school in Malawi, and as a lecturer at Makerere University in Uganda. In 1968 he joined the University of Singapore and taught in the Department of English for three years. Throughout this time he was publishing short stories and journalism, and wrote a number of novels. Among these were Fong and the Indians, Girls at Play and Jungle Lovers, all of which appear in one volume, On the Edge of the Great Rift (Penguin, 1996).

In the early 1970s Paul Theroux moved with his wife and two children to Dorset, where he wrote Saint Jack, and then on to London. He was a resident in Britain for a total of seventeen years. In this time he wrote a dozen volumes of highly praised fiction and a number of successful travel books, from which a selection of writings were taken to compile his book Travelling the World (Penguin, 1992). Paul Theroux has now returned to the United States, but he continues to travel widely.

Paul Theroux's many books include Picture Palace, which won the 1978 Whitbread Literary Award; The Mosquito Coast, which was the 1981 Yorkshire Post Novel of the Year and joint winner of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, and was also made into a feature film; Riding the Iron Rooster, which won the 1988 Thomas Cook Travel Book Award; The Pillars of Hercules, shortlisted for the 1996 Thomas Cook Travel Book Award; My Other Life: A Novel, Kowloon Tong, Sir Vidia's Shadow, Fresh-air Fiend and Hotel Honolulu. Blindness is his latest novel. Most of his books are published by Penguin.

Product Description


"Picaresque ... Enchanting ... Theroux is a gifted and versatile tale spinner." -- Time "Amazing ... (A) Startlingly Original Tale Of Pure Magic...that amuses, unnerves, and captivates the reader in a spell of bewilderment, danger, and awe...The reader (will) be enthralled." -- The Boston Sunday Herald "Magical ... (A) funny, dark satire of America's obsessions." -- The New York Times Book Review --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Paul Theroux's highly acclaimed books include Dark Star Safari, Ghost Train to the Eastern Star, Riding the Iron Rooster, The Great Railway Bazaar, The Old Patagonian Express, Fresh Air Fiend, The Elephanta Suite and A Dead Hand. The Mosquito Coast and Dr Slaughter have both been made into successful films. Paul Theroux is also a frequent contributor to magazines, and divides his time between Cape Cod and the Hawaiian islands. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Michelle Routledge on 22 Mar. 2007
Format: Paperback
Jilly is a lonely child, living in a trailer with a family who won't even notice or care whether she's there or not. one day she visits the travelling circus and witnesses Millroy the Magician on stage. Millroy interacts with the children, but is his magic real? He notices Jilly and immediately there is a spark between the two. Jilly leaves home to travel with millroy, dressed as a boy to avoid misunderstandings. obsessed with healthy eating, Millroy opens the Number One diner, which he staffs with children who he believes are open minded enough to understand his plans to make a healthy world. The diner takes off, but the other children are jealous of Milroy's favouritism towards jilly and splinter groups begin to form. although the book has many children characters, it is not a children's book and certainly not sugary.

I have been a total booksworm for over thirty years and this is still, by a long way, the best book I've ever read. It is a love story of the highest degree, a book full of strange happenings and the best anti-Macdonalds novel you could ever hope for. There is just simply nothing negative to say about this book it is Theroux at his absolute best.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By neverendings on 9 July 2012
Format: Paperback
While Millroy is working a fairground as a magician, he encounters teenage misfit Jilly Farina. Immediately, Jilly allows herself to be swept into Millroy's life, and soon discovers that his fascination/obsession with food and the body has a deeply spiritual connection for him. This in turn evolves into a cult religion (sorry, movement) into which adults are rarely admitted.

Sinister though Millroy and his magic seem, his motivation is not publicity, money, or sex. Nonetheless, as the book progresses many seeds are planted in the reader's mind regarding Millroy's state of mind and/or sanity. This is a very intriguing story of the balance between innocence and power, manipulation, and a friendship with very delicate structures of support.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By LED overdose on 10 Oct. 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
This is one of the few books I have read twice in a row. Over the years I must have read it half a dozen times and I have now downloaded it on to my Kindle. In my eyes, Paul Theroux's best book.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By R.O. P on 25 April 2001
Format: Paperback
I,ve read and enjoyed Theroux's travel books such as the intensive yet fulfilling Pillars of Hercules and The Great Railway Bazzar. However I have personally found that the travel writer Theroux excells in his fiction. For Millroy The Magician .Theroux has created an iconic charecter in the magician who comes on the scene in small town America to begin an unusual liason with a 14 year old girl.For to long this excellant masterpiece has been over shadowed by Theroux's more inferior yet overated works. A dazzling rags to riches saga of misadventures. Millroy is a 90's messiah for his disciples of under privelaged youths.This is a superb and compulsive page turner like no other and even superior to Theroux's Kowloon Tong and Doctor Slaughter. Paul Theroux is underated as a novelist and has so much more to offer Hollywood than The Mosquito Coast and Doctor Slaughter .Milroy The Magician is Theroux at his spellbinding excellance.
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