"This is a riveting memoir, sensitive, wise and unsparing." -- Diane Sawyer

They came out of the womb five minutes apart.
Tim was supposed to come out first.
He made his twin brother Kim do it instead.
Tim won that round.
Later, Tim went crazy.
Kim didn’t.
Tim tried to cut off his hand.
Kim didn’t.
Tim drank. A LOT.
Kim didn’t.
Tim disappeared.
Kim didn’t.
Wonderful, horrible things happened to them in the water.
Actually…it’s a little more complicated than that.
But it all really happened.

The History of Swimming details author Kim Powers' frantic search for his twin brother Tim -- his best friend, his greatest enemy -- who disappears from Manhattan one weekend in his late twenties. Kim -- almost mystically -- imagines that the clues to Tim's whereabouts have been planted in a series of letters written by Tim over the years, part of an ongoing cat-and-mouse game between the two brothers.

Now, Kim uses the letters as a sort of roadmap that takes him back to Texas, the setting of their greatest triumphs and tragedies: their mother's death, Tim's nervous breakdown, first loves, coming out, a best friend's brutal rape. But is it a race against time for somebody still alive, or already dead?