A woman in New York awakens knowing, as deeply as a mother's blood can know, that her grown son is in danger. She has not heard from him in weeks. His name is Jonas. His girlfriend, Vic, doesn't know what she has done wrong, but Jonas won't answer his cell phone. We soon learn that Jonas is isolated in a safe-house apartment in New York City, pondering his conversion to Islam and his experiences training in Pakistan, preparing for the violent action he has been instructed to take in 31 hours. Jonas's absence from the lives of those who love him causes a cascade of events, and as the novel moves through the streets and subways of New York we come to know intimately the lives of its characters. We also learn to feel deeply the connections and disconnections that occur between young people and their parents not only in this country but in the Middle East as well. Carried by Hamilton's highly-lauded prose, this story about the helplessness of those who cannot contact a beloved young man who is on a devastatingly confused path is compelling on the most human level. In our world, when a family loses track of an idealistic son an entire city could be in danger. From the author of The Distance Between Us.
- Paperback | 229 pages
- 149.86 x 226.06 x 12.7mm | 544.31g
- 07 Sep 2010
- Unbridled Books
"Hamilton has used both her considerable empathy as a writer and her experience in the Middle East to create an intimate portrait of 21-year-old Jonas Meitzner. It's not easy to like him for what he intends to do, much less admire him, but Hamilton makes us aware of his humanity...Sensitive, lonely and full of the anger and doubt many young people feel, Jonas seems in Hamilton's hands not a stranger, not an impenetrable figure of dread whose behavior is beyond our understanding, but the ordinary, fragile child of ordinary, fragile people. You don't exactly want to look at the story of what happens to Jonas, but Hamilton has made it very hard to tear your gaze away."--The Washington Post "Riveting.... a potent psychological analysis on the true meaning of loyalty -- to friends, family members and country -- and what any of us, given the chance, would to do to uphold it."--The Minneapolis Star-Tribune "Highly readable...keeps us engaged most with the desire to answer the standard thriller question: Can the killer be stopped?...Hamilton arrays her characters smartly, then points them toward the subway...Women, in particular, will inhale this book."--Cleveland Plain Dealer "One of the best novels I've read this year."--Carol Fitzgerald, founder, BookReporter.com "Gorgeous and complex....a very tense narrative, vividly imagined and eerily plausible."--Publishers Weekly "How much can we ever know the ones we truly love? So asks Masha Hamilton in her riveting new novel, 31 HOURS. It kept me up all night, and left me in tears."--Amanda Eyre Ward, author of Sleep Toward Heaven, Love Stories In This Town "Fascinating."--Booklist "A literary novel that is also as suspenseful as a thriller. "31 Hours" is Hamilton's third book, and while the phrase "break-out book" is often bandied about too easily, Hamilton has written something singular...Masha Hamilton's new book has the pace of the most entertaining thriller, the informati