Patricia Highsmith was one of the first authors to tell her stories from the "villain's" point of view. In this novel we meet one of her lesser known anti-heroes, Chester MacFarlane, a conman like Tom Ripley, and again Highsmith manipulates us into sympathising with him. A love triangle between MacFarlane, his wife and a young tourist guide further complicates a fascinating tale of crime and flight which takes us to gorgeous places like Athens, Crete and Paris. At the end of the course we shall watch the film version with Viggo Mortensen and Kirsten Dunst.
Participants are requested to read parts of the text at home as preparation for the discussion in class (reading chapters 1–3 for the first evening would be useful).