Pat Conroy has written three of my all-time favorite novels: The Great Santini, The Lords of Discipline and Prince of Tides. That's why I'm happy to see the news that he's close to finishing his first new novel since his 1995 publication of Beach Music. Conroy is at his best when dealing with the flawed personalities that he observed while growing up in the South and I consider him to be one of the great modern Southern writers. It sounds likely that his new book will be a worthy addition to his already admirable body of work.
''The Prince of Tides'' author Pat Conroy says he's finishing his first novel in more than a decade, and it will mark a return to the same dysfunctional characters he's known for....
Conroy's last book was a cookbook published in 2004.
The new novel is set in Charleston and is already nearly 700 pages, Conroy said. ''It drives me nuts. But long-windedness ... there's nothing you can do about it. I wanted to write a 250-page novel, but I realize I can't even write a prologue that's 250 pages.''For the sake of other Pat Conroy fans who may have missed it, I have to mention how much I enjoyed his My Losing Season, Conroy's true account of his days as a point guard for the Citadel's basketball team. This is one of my favorite sports books because of the insights it gives into the mind of an average athlete who refuses to quit despite competing for a losing team. Most sports books feature winning teams or great individual athletes so it is refreshing to find a book that deals so honestly with losing.