William Silver is a talented and charismatic young teacher whose
unconventional methods raise eyebrows among his colleagues and superiors. His students, however, are devoted to him. His teaching of Camus, Faulkner, Sartre, Keats, and other kindred souls breathes life into their sense of social justice and their capacities for philosophical and ethical thought. But unbeknownst to his adoring pupils, Silver proves incapable of living up to the ideals he encourages in others. Emotionally scarred by failures in his personal life and driven to distraction by the City of Light's overpowering carnality
and beauty, Silver succumbs to a temptation that will change the
course of his life. His fall will render him a criminal in the eyes of some and all too human in the eyes of others. In Maksik's
stylish prose, Paris is sensual, dazzling, and dangerously seductive. It serves as a fitting backdrop for a dramatic tale about the tension between desire and action, and about the complex relationship that exists between our public and private selves.
Alexander Maksik is the Provost's Postgraduate Writing Fellow at the University of Iowa and the recipient of a Truman Capote Fellowship.