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From the National Book Award–winning and bestselling author of Let the Great World Spin comes an epic novel rooted in the real-life friendship between two men united by loss.
“Staggering . . . Writing at the top of his game, Colum McCann brings us a book that we sorely need.”—Elizabeth Strout
Colum McCann’s most ambitious work to date, Apeirogon—named for a shape with a countably infinite number of sides—is a tour de force concerning friendship, love, loss, and belonging.
Bassam Aramin is Palestinian. Rami Elhanan is Israeli. They inhabit a world of conflict that colors every aspect of their daily lives, from the roads they are allowed to drive on, to the schools their daughters, Abir and Smadar, each attend, to the checkpoints, both physical and emotional, they must negotiate.
Their worlds shift irreparably after ten-year-old Abir is killed by a rubber bullet and thirteen-year-old Smadar becomes the victim of suicide bombers. When Bassam and Rami learn of each other’s stories, they recognize the loss that connects them and they attempt to use their grief as a weapon for peace.
McCann crafts Apeirogon out of a universe of fictional and nonfictional material. He crosses centuries and continents, stitching together time, art, history, nature, and politics in a tale both heartbreaking and hopeful. Musical, cinematic, muscular, delicate, and soaring, Apeirogon is a novel for our time.
About the Author
Colum McCann is the internationally bestselling author of the novels TransAtlantic, Let the Great World Spin, Zoli, Dancer, This Side of Brightness, and Songdogs, as well as three critically acclaimed story collections and the nonfiction book Letters to a Young Writer. His fiction has been published in over forty languages. He has received many international honors, including the National Book Award, the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, a Guggenheim fellowship, the Pushcart Prize, and an Oscar nomination for his short film Everything in This Country Must. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as the Irish association of artists Aosdána, and he has also received a Chevalier des Artes et des Lettres award from the French government. In addition, he has won awards in Italy, Germany, and China. A contributor to The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Atlantic, and The Paris Review, he teaches in the Hunter College MFA Creative Writing program. He lives with his family in New York City, where he is the cofounder of the global nonprofit story exchange organization Narrative 4.
“Devotees of Colum McCann will find Apeirogon teeming with everything they have come to expect from his work: gorgeous prose; a sweeping look at the paradoxical relationship between history and private life; a penetrating examination of the deficiencies and marvels of the human spirit. This book will break your heart and make you rethink how storytelling works.”—Téa Obreht
“Every signiﬁcant novel is an act of reckless originality. Apeirogon is nothing like any book you’ve ever read. Think of discovering an entirely unprecedented, and profoundly true, narrative form. Think about feeling that the very idea of the novel, of what it can be and what it’s capable of containing, has been expanded, forever.”—Michael Cunningham
“A quite extraordinary novel. Colum McCann has found the form and voice to tell the most complex of stories, with an unexpected friendship between two men at its powerfully beating heart.”—Kamila Shamsie
“This beautiful, deeply felt book is first and foremost an extraordinary act of listening.”—Nathan Englander
“A work of incredible magnitude . . . McCann finds the emotional accuracy, the sensitivity, and the beauty to tell the heartbreaking reality of life in Israel-Palestine, while allowing readers a glimmer of necessary hope.”—Assaf Gavron
“Distinguished by empathy and intelligence, this transformative novel marks a new threshold of writing about the conflict. Apeirogon will have a potent effect on all those who read it and, remarkably, could lead to great consequences for the future of this place.”—Raja Shehadeh
“A soaring, ambitious triumph . . . deeply nuanced and sensitive . . . a remarkable achievement . . . McCann’s latest novel may be his finest yet.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“[A] masterful novel . . . Balancing its dazzling intellectual breadth with moments of searing intimacy, this is a transformative vision of a historic conflict and a triumph of the novelist’s art.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)