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A conspiracy of tall men


New York, NY : Hachette Audio, [2018]
Physical Description:
11 audio discs (approximately 12.12 hr.) : CD audio, digital ; 4 3/4 in.
General Note:
Title from web page.

Compact discs.
In this remarkably smart and totally absorbing literary thriller, Noah Hawley cracks through listener's last remaining illusions about life in America to expose the dark, eccentric paranoia that thrives at its center.
Geographic Term:
Added Author:


Call Number
CD Hawley, N.

On Order



The debut literary thriller that launched the career of the bestselling author of BEFORE THE FALL and the creator of the show Fargo .
Linus Owen is a young professor of conspiracy theory at a small college just outside San Francisco. His marriage is foundering and his wife, Claudia, has gone to Chicago to visit her mother. But if Claudia is in Chicago, how is it that two FBI agents show up at Linus' office and inform him that Claudia has been killed in a plane crash on her way from New York to Brazil? And why did a man named Jeffrey Holden, the vice president of a major pharmaceutical company, buy her ticket and die beside her?

Enlisting the aid of two fellow conspiracy theorists, Linus heads across the country in search of answers. But as their journey progresses, it becomes frighteningly clear they've left the realm of the academic and are tangled up in a dangerous, multilayered cover-up. Finally, deep in the heart of the American desert, stunned by an ominous revelation, Linus sees he has a new mission: to try to stay alive.

Part Don DeLillo, part Kurt Vonnegut, with writing that is electric, whip-smart and suspenseful at each turn, Noah Hawley draws us into a deliciously labyrinthine world of paranoia and plots.
"Energetic and funny...an engrossing debut." -- The New York Times

Author Notes

Noah Hawley is an Emmy, Golden Globe, Critics' Choice, and Peabody Award-winning author, screenwriter and producer.

Noah is the author of A Conspiracy of Tall Men (1998), Other People's Weddings (2004), The Punch (2008), The Good Father (2012), and Before the Fall (2016). He also wrote the script for the feature film Lies and Alibis.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Orwellian echoes haunt this provocative, tongue-in-cheek debut chiller about bureaucratic mind control. When the feds fly Linus Owens, a professor of conspiracy theory at a small San Francisco college, to Florida to identify his wife's body at the site of a terrorist airliner bombing, he's devastated to learn she was on her way to Brazil with a secret lover. Mistrustful of the government, Linus coerces the airline into supplying him with the plane's unaltered passenger list and sets out with a pair of fellow conspiracy analysts to find the radicals responsible for his wife's death. After the three academics pull off some fancy computer hacking, Linus escapes the spying eyes of his pill-popping, neurotic "FBI" (really CIA) babysitter and heads cross-country to track the culprits to their lair. Marital infidelity, an enigmatic terrorist group called Danton, the long-forgotten disappearance of a talk-radio rabble-rouser, pharmaceutical intrigue involving clandestine trials of a mind-control drug, government-orchestrated kidnapping and murder all figure in the plot. Linus's search turns up more dead ends than a street map of Washington, D.C., until, by the end of this suspenseful, cerebral satire, staying alive becomes more important than finding answers as the outraged professor matches wits with men in black. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Kirkus Review

A paranoidŽs delight: In middle life and still followed about by a cloud of foreboding, Linus Owens is a professor of conspiracy theory who is himself wrapped tight in an infinite catŽs cradle of suspicions about large-sum currency, cellular phones, faxes, large screen TVs, multiple CD changers, electronic organizers, the terrifying sound of his own wife, Claudia, steaming milk in their espresso machine. HeŽs sure that a clandestine cabal runs the world. Then, when Claudia is visiting her mother in Chicago, some FBI agents show upŽand tell him that she has actually died in a plane that crashed on its way to Brazil. Brazil? In grief, Linus draws on fellow conspiracy theorists to uncover the tie between ClaudiaŽs ad agency and the federal government. Why has he received a phone message in broken English telling what the hours in a Chinese restaurant are? Can fellow theorist LutherŽs experimenting with cold fusion in hopes of building a black-hole bomb help Linus find out who murdered his wifeŽif she is indeed dead? Has he himself committed a federal crime and is he being recorded on grainy black-and-white film? Will we know more about the history and practice of applied fear as a means of governing after we read this brainodrama? A debut thriller with storytelling grip.