The Man Who Walked Away

Maud Casey. Bloomsbury, $25 (240p) ISBN 978-1-62040-311-2
Casey’s haunting third novel (after Genealogy) is both unconventional and engaging. In a former pilgrimage church in late-19th-century Bordeaux, a nameless director and doctor manage a small mental asylum along unusually humane lines. One day, a man named Albert arrives at its gates. Unable to keep himself from setting out on fresh journeys, or to remember how he got to each new place, Albert has walked through Europe and beyond, unmoored to home, love, and time. As he bonds with the asylum’s patients and offers what he knows of his past to the doctor, who tries to “listen past the words,” Albert tentatively regains his footing in the everyday world. But his work with the doctor transforms both of them in ways that neither expects. Though her plot is solidly rooted in the history of medicine (a character based on famed French neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot makes a memorable appearance), Casey’s true focus is human rather than clinical. Our need for stories, our relationship with time, the inevitability of loss, and our startling endurance all resonate through her beautifully crafted interweaving of image and observation, fairy tale and fact. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/27/2014
Release date: 03/04/2014
Show other formats
Paperback - 240 pages - 978-1-62040-313-6
Hardcover - 1 pages - 978-1-4088-5030-5
Hardcover - 1 pages - 978-1-4088-6025-0
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Email Address


Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.