A Dead Hand is a dark tale of crime in Calcutta, by Paul Theroux. Jerry Delfont is a travel writer with writer's block. Lounging in Calcutta one day, he receives a mysterious letter. It comes from an American philanthropist, Mrs Merrill Unger. An Indian friend of her son is in trouble: he woke up in a hotel room with a dead body next to him; he panicked and fled. Mrs Unger would like someone to discreetly look into this matter, to find out the truth. Will Delfont do her the honour? But Jerry is at first more intrigued by the beautiful, beguiling Mrs Unger and her Tantric massages. Yet as he begins investigating the circumstances surrounding the body he wonders what exactly is the nature of her philanthropy...A Dead Hand is a dark and twisted narrative of obsession and need from one of our finest writers. "Richly enjoyable, entertaining ...a satisfyingly tense, almost thrillerish conclusion". (Financial Times). "Genuinely intriguing". (The Times). "Original and enlightening". (Daily Telegraph). "Theroux's prose is always a pleasure". (Tatler).
Paul Theroux's books include Dark Star Safari, Ghost Train to the Eastern Star, Riding the Iron Rooster, The Great Railway Bazaar, The Elephanta Suite, A Dead Hand, The Tao of Travel and The Lower River. The Mosquito Coast and Dr Slaughter have both been made into successful films. Paul Theroux divides his time between Cape Cod and the Hawaiian islands.