Theft

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May 05, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT

In this clever, overwrought novel by Booker Prize winner Peter Carey, two earthy narrators tell what happens when a treacherous vixen turns up at their remote, buggy Australian home. Butcher Boone — a hard-boozing painter of some renown — and his bonkers brother, Hugh (”doughy, six foot four, filthy, dangerous looking”), are going about their grubby business in the New South Wales outback, when Marlene Leibovitz arrives with her Manolo Blahnik heels and an irresistibly shady agenda. (She has an appointment with the Boones’ rich neighbor, whose expensive old painting soon vanishes.) Carey is clearly having a blast with his material — part art caper, part noir love story — but he never quite brings the colorful Theft into focus.

Theft

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Theft

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