Barbary Shore is Norman Mailer's second published novel, written after Mailer's great success with his 1948 debut The Naked and the Dead. It concerns a protagonist who rents a room in a Brooklyn boarding house with the intention of writing a novel. Wounded during World War II, he is an amnesiac, and much of his past is a secret to himself. After Rinehart & Company published the novel in 1951, it received poor reviews and sold poorly. The failure of Barbary Shore and Mailer's next novel, The Deer Park (1955) triggered a decade-long hiatus from the novel by Mailer, which ended with the publication of An American Dream in 1965.