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Retired to the English countryside, an eighty-nine-year-old man, rumored to be a once-famous detective, is more concerned with his beekeeping than with his fellow man. Into his life wanders Linus Steinman, nine years old and mute, who has escaped from Nazi Germany with his sole companion: an African gray parrot.
What is the meaning of the mysterious strings of German numbers the bird spews out -- a top-secret SS code? The keys to a series of Swiss bank accounts? Or do they hold a significance both more prosaic and far more sinister?
Though the solution may be beyond even the reach of the once-famous sleuth, the true story of the boy and his parrot is subtly revealed in a wrenching resolution.
“One of the best-written American novels published this fall . . . an experiment by a master.”
-The New York Sun
“A profound pleasure.”
-New York magazine
“Delightful…and deceptively profound...Chabon shows his greatness.”
-Louisville Courier Journal
“Simple and startlingly sad…Chabon has created a minor masterpiece.”
“A haunting novella.”
“Brilliant and unswervingly entertaining.”
“The writing is everything that Chabon’s fans expect--gorgeous, muscular, mildly melancholic…wonderfully executed.”
“Packed with gorgeous writing…a knockout. You’ll be done before you know it. Then you might well read it again.”
-Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
“Michael Chabon, is, simply, the coolest writer in America.”
-Christian Science Monitor
“Chabon’s writing here is elegant and limber…[The Final Solution] is a little mystery story with big ideas.”
-San Francisco Chronicle (Best Books of 2004)
“A knockout…you’ll be done before you know it. Then you might well read it again.”
“Watching Chabon skillfully zigzag between literary and genre is half the fun of the book…refreshing.”
“Exuberant…the real mystery is how Chabon managed to fit so much hope and humanity into such a brief tale.”
“Infused with a graceful, elegiac atmosphere…wrought with innovative construction, glittering with epiphany…remarkable.”