The setting is Atlanta, Georgia — a racially mixed, late-century boomtown full of fresh wealth and wily politicians. The protagonist is Charles Croker, once a college football star, now a late-middle-aged Atlanta conglomerate king whose outsize ego has at last hit up against reality. Charlie has a 29,000 acre quail-shooting plantation, a young and demanding second wife, and a half-empty office complex with a staggering load of debt.
Meanwhile, Conrad Hensley, idealistic young father of two, is laid off from his job at the Croker Global Foods warehouse near Oakland and finds himself spiraling into the lower depths of the American legal system.
And back in Atlanta, when star Georgia Tech running back Fareek "the Canon” Fanon, a homegrown product of the city's slums, is accused of date-raping the daughter of a pillar of the white establishment, upscale black lawyer Roger White II is asked to represent Fanon and help keep the city's delicate racial balance from blowing sky-high.
Networks of illegal Asian immigrants crisscrossing the continent, daily life behind bars, shady real estate syndicates — Wolfe shows us contemporary America with all the verve, wit, and insight that have made him our most admired novelist. Charlie Croker's deliverance from his tribulations provides an unforgettable denouement to the most widely awaited, hilarious and telling novel America has seen in ages — Tom Wolfe's most outstanding achievement to date.
Tom Wolfe (eigentlich: Thomas Kennerly Wolfe) wurde am 2. März 1931 in Richmond, Virginia, geboren. Nach der Promotion an der Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, arbeitete er als Reporter bei der "Washington Post" und zog 1962 nach New York, wo er zum Starreporter der "New York Herold Tribune" aufstieg. Nach zwei Reportageromanen ("The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test", 1968, deutsch: "Unter Strom"; "The Right Stuff", 1979, deutsch: "Die Helden der Nation") veröffentlichte Tom Wolfe 1987 seinen ersten fiktionalen Roman - "Fegefeuer der Eitelkeiten" - und schaffte damit sogleich den internationalen Durchbruch.