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Hidden: A Novel

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Six years after her attack, Maggie Wilson receives a call from the prosecutor who put her husband in jail after Maggie identified him as the man who nearly killed her. Told that another inmate has confessed to the crime and that her ex-husband will be freed, Maggie plunges into memories of her stormy marriage to her college sweetheart, Nate Duke. Secluded in the old farmhouse that was her marital home, Maggie pores through trial transcripts, old journals, and photo albums, recreating the history of their courtship and trying fruitlessly to remember the events of that fateful night.

Review:

"An Indiana woman whose world was shattered in one fateful night spends the entirety of this meditative literary debut/sleepy thriller unraveling its events. Twenty-two-year-old Maggie's crumbling marriage takes its final blow when she is beaten nearly to death in her idyllic farmhouse, and Nate, her domineering and abusive husband, is put in prison for the crime. Cross-cutting between the mid-1990s, before the assault, and the novel's present in 2002, Jaskunas weaves a complex mystery: though everything Maggie remembers about that night suggests that Nate was the perpetrator, a convict about to be released claims responsibility for the six-year-old crime. When Nate is exonerated, Maggie is thrown into a lonely spiral of self-doubt and confusion. At the heart of this insightful, atmospheric novel are the complexities of truth — how much can Maggie trust her own version of events? Jaskunas gracefully evokes the beauty of his rural Indiana setting and the town of New Harmony, where epileptic, solitary Maggie is now the 'local eccentric...the village freak,' who must dig into her former life, unearthing denials she had been living all along: 'I can see the spot where hung the painting of our perfect home,' she says, 'the lie that started all the lies.' Agent, Erin Hosier. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"It's no small feat for a male novelist to write in the first person voice of a female protagonist, but Paul Jaskunas has it down completely, no hint of a stutter or misstep. Ostensibly a book about a crime, it is really about the universal mystery of identity." Anna Quindlen, Book-of-the-Month Club News

Review:

"With so many books, it is difficult for a first novel to grab a reader's attention. Paul Jaskunas's Hidden achieves this because he takes seriously literature's ability to allow us a magical transformation out of our own skin and into someone else's." The Washington Post

Review:

"This is an extremely impressive first novel, stylistically assured and emotionally probing. Jaskunas' characters — especially his female lead — practically spring from the page, their fears, flaws, and behavior all startlingly real." Booklist

Review:

"Jaskunas's debut uses the assault not as a mystery to be solved but as a trapdoor into a suffocating nightmare of false love, delusion, and sad dreams of escape." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Jaskunas creates a hauntingly intricate weave of events in his first novel, which has the quality of a fever dream....As much as Hidden is a novel of suspense, it is also an elegant exploration of vulnerability when it's seeded by guilt and loss." New York Daily News

About the Author

Raised in Indiana, Paul Jaskunas took degrees at Oberlin College and Cornell University. A recent recipient of a Fulbright fellowship and grant from the Constance Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts, he has written for the Chicago Tribune, The American Lawyer, Commonweal, and other publications. Mr. Jaskunas lives in Arlington, Virginia, with his wife, Solveiga. This is his first novel.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780743257800
Author:
Jaskunas, Paul
Publisher:
Free Press
Author:
Jaskunas, Paul Richard
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
B102
Publication Date:
July 2005
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
8.44 x 5.5 in 12.32 oz

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z

Hidden: A Novel New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$17.95 In Stock
Product details 256 pages Free Press - English 9780743257800 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "An Indiana woman whose world was shattered in one fateful night spends the entirety of this meditative literary debut/sleepy thriller unraveling its events. Twenty-two-year-old Maggie's crumbling marriage takes its final blow when she is beaten nearly to death in her idyllic farmhouse, and Nate, her domineering and abusive husband, is put in prison for the crime. Cross-cutting between the mid-1990s, before the assault, and the novel's present in 2002, Jaskunas weaves a complex mystery: though everything Maggie remembers about that night suggests that Nate was the perpetrator, a convict about to be released claims responsibility for the six-year-old crime. When Nate is exonerated, Maggie is thrown into a lonely spiral of self-doubt and confusion. At the heart of this insightful, atmospheric novel are the complexities of truth — how much can Maggie trust her own version of events? Jaskunas gracefully evokes the beauty of his rural Indiana setting and the town of New Harmony, where epileptic, solitary Maggie is now the 'local eccentric...the village freak,' who must dig into her former life, unearthing denials she had been living all along: 'I can see the spot where hung the painting of our perfect home,' she says, 'the lie that started all the lies.' Agent, Erin Hosier. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "It's no small feat for a male novelist to write in the first person voice of a female protagonist, but Paul Jaskunas has it down completely, no hint of a stutter or misstep. Ostensibly a book about a crime, it is really about the universal mystery of identity."
"Review" by , "With so many books, it is difficult for a first novel to grab a reader's attention. Paul Jaskunas's Hidden achieves this because he takes seriously literature's ability to allow us a magical transformation out of our own skin and into someone else's."
"Review" by , "This is an extremely impressive first novel, stylistically assured and emotionally probing. Jaskunas' characters — especially his female lead — practically spring from the page, their fears, flaws, and behavior all startlingly real."
"Review" by , "Jaskunas's debut uses the assault not as a mystery to be solved but as a trapdoor into a suffocating nightmare of false love, delusion, and sad dreams of escape."
"Review" by , "Jaskunas creates a hauntingly intricate weave of events in his first novel, which has the quality of a fever dream....As much as Hidden is a novel of suspense, it is also an elegant exploration of vulnerability when it's seeded by guilt and loss."
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