First Sentence: The twelve men congregated in the smoking room of the Crown Hotel gave the impression of a party accidentally met.
Back of the book:
It is 1866, and Walter Moody has come to make his fortune upon the New Zealand goldfields. On arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of twelve local men, who have met in secret to discuss a series of unsolved crimes. A wealthy man has vanished, a whore has tried to end her life, and an enormous fortune has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. Moody is soon drawn into the mystery: a network of fates and fortunes that is as complex and exquisitely patterned as the night sky.
Quotes from the book:
One could know a thousand women, Gascoigne thought; one could take a different girl every night for years and years – but sooner or later, the new lovers would do little more than call to mind the old, and one would be forced to wander, lost, in that reflective maze of endless comparison, forever disappointed, forever turning back.
“How strange, Ah Sook thought later, that one’s gestures remain the same, even as the body changes weathers and gives itself over to age – as though the gestures were the real vessel, the vase to the body’s flower.”
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Last Sentence: ‘The rain.’