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About the blogger:
Debra Hamel is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.


Books by Debra Hamel:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


paperback | Kindle | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


paperback | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)





Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



St. John Mandel, Emily: The Singer's Gun

  Amazon  

4.5 stars

Emily St. John Mandel's The Singer's Gun opens on an investigation. A woman working for the State Department is listening over and over to a snippet of conversation recorded 15 days earlier--a few words only, confirmation of a job completed, nothing much. It's not clear for a long while how the recording fits into what follows. And what follows is an exploration of why Anton Waker abandoned his wife on their honeymoon and is now sitting alone on the island of Ischia, off the coast of Naples, biding his time and missing his one-eyed cat. Eventually all is made clear: the layers of Anton's life are slowly peeled away in chapters that explore his unusual childhood, the strange circumstances of his employment, his adversarial relationship with his cousin. Nothing in Anton's life is quite what it looks like on the surface. Any guess we may have initially about the reasons for his wait on Ischia would be wrong.

Anton is a complex character who's been living in a world that doesn't fit him. He's disturbed by his environment but doesn't break away from it given the opportunity, and he in fact participates in activities he doesn't quite approve of. The book thus introduces questions about what constitutes moral behavior and about personal responsibility. While it is by no means a fast-paced thriller, the book does become a tense read toward the end, and it is always compelling. Anton's situation--the wait on Ischia, and more so his being warehoused at work prior to his honeymoon--is so strange that you can't but read on for the answers. St. John Mandel's second book--see my review of Last Night in Montreal--is another winner.

Comments

1.

Thanks for visiting, Pam! I hope you like it if you do wind up getting a copy.

2.

This looks like a very intriguing read. Thanks for the great review! You might also enjoy a new one coming out called, "Minder." It's a psychic espionage thriller that's the first part in a series coming out June 18th. You can visit the author's website at:
http://www.ganzfield.com/

3.

I posted this book to my blog on May 19. As I said there "This is Anton’s story but not just Anton’s. As his mother tells him, 'Well, most things you have to do in life are at least a little questionable…' Haven't we all been there?"

4.

This really sounds like an interesting book. I like the plot of having the main character having problem with his life. Also instead of having Anton run away from the reality, he tries to get over it. I would like to read this book.

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