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Witty, compelling. -- The Boston Globe. Gripped by an overwhelming obsession, Charles Strickland, a conventional London stockbroker, decides in midlife to desert his wife, family, business, and civilization for his art. One of Maugham's most popular works, The Moon and Sixpence is a riveting story about an uncompromising and self-destructive man who forsakes wealth and comfort to pursue the life of a painter. Drifting from Paris to Marseilles, Strickland eventually settles in Tahiti, takes a mistress, and in spite of poverty and a long, terminal illness, produces his most passionate and mysterious works of art. Loosely based on the life of Paul Gauguin, Maugham's timeless masterpiece is storytelling at its best -- an insightful work focusing on artistic fixation that propels the artist beyond the commonplace into the selfish realm of genius.