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The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley
by Hannah Tinti


Overview - A coming-of-age novel and a literary thrill ride about the price we pay to protect the people we love most.

-A father-daughter road trip you won't soon forget.---Richard Russo

Samuel Hawley isn't like the other fathers in Olympus, Massachusetts.
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More About The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley by Hannah Tinti
 
 
 
Overview
A coming-of-age novel and a literary thrill ride about the price we pay to protect the people we love most.

-A father-daughter road trip you won't soon forget.---Richard Russo

Samuel Hawley isn't like the other fathers in Olympus, Massachusetts. A loner who spent years living on the run, he raised his beloved daughter, Loo, on the road, moving from motel to motel, always watching his back. Now that Loo's a teenager, Hawley wants only to give her a normal life. In his late wife's hometown, he finds work as a fisherman, while Loo struggles to fit in at the local high school.
Growing more and more curious about the mother she never knew, Loo begins to investigate. Soon, everywhere she turns, she encounters the mysteries of her parents' lives before she was born. This hidden past is made all the more real by the twelve scars her father carries on his body. Each scar is from a bullet Hawley took over the course of his criminal career. Each is a memory: of another place on the map, another thrilling close call, another moment of love lost and found. As Loo uncovers a history that's darker than she could have known, the demons of her father's past spill over into the present--and together both Hawley and Loo must face a reckoning yet to come.
Advance praise for The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley
- An] atmospheric, complexly suspenseful saga . . . with life or death struggles in dramatic settings . . . and starring a fiercely loving, reluctant criminal and a girl of grit and wonder . . . a breathtaking novel of violence and tenderness.---Booklist (starred review)
-Seamlessly transposing classical myth into a quintessentially American landscape and marrying taut suspense with dreamy lyricism, Hannah] Tinti's beautifully intricate second novel is well worth the wait. . . . Tinti's imagery evokes time, space, the sea, and the myth of Heracles without losing the narrative's sure grounding in American communities and culture. This is a convincingly redemptive and celebratory novel: an affirmation of the way that heroism and human fallibility coexist, of how good parenting comes in unexpected packages, and of the way that we are marked by our encounters with each other and the luminous universe in which we dwell.---Publishers Weekly (starred review)
-The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley is one part Quentin Tarantino, one part Scheherazade, and twelve parts wild innovation. Hannah Tinti proves herself to be an old-fashioned storyteller of the highest order.---Ann Patchett, author of Commonwealth
-What Hannah Tinti knows about fathers, daughters, and time could, as they say, fill a book--and truly does. The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley is bold, exciting, and original.---Meg Wolitzer, author of The Interestings
-The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley is utterly magnificent--gripping, suspenseful, funny, and so full of heart. Young Loo and her father are contemporary characters with the stature and magnetism of the great heroes of literature. The reader in me was racing through to find out what would befall them, while the writer, awestruck by Hannah Tinti's powerful storytelling, was desperately trying to slow down. This is a book I will return to again and again, for sheer pleasure and to learn how it is done.---Ruth Ozeki, author of A Tale for the Time Being

From our buyer, Margaret Terwey: "The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley is a coming-of-age novel and a literary thrill ride about the price we pay to protect the people we love most."

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780812989885
  • ISBN-10: 0812989880
  • Publisher: Dial Press
  • Publish Date: March 2017
  • Page Count: 400
  • Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Literary
Books > Fiction > Family Life - General
Books > Fiction > Coming of Age

 
BookPage Reviews

A criminal tries to go straight for his daughter

Who has more lives than a cat and the bullet scars to prove it? That would be Samuel Hawley, the fascinatingly complicated and morally dubious titular character of Hannah Tinti’s gorgeous and gut-wrenching new novel, The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley.

Having escaped more than his fair share of criminal capers by little more than the skin of his teeth, Hawley has spent most of his life on the lam, pulling up stakes and starting over with his daughter, Loo, whenever a job goes poorly. But when Loo turns 12, Hawley decides a little stability might serve her well and moves them to Olympus, Massachusetts, the small coastal village where Loo’s dead mother spent her girlhood. As the two perennial outsiders cautiously become part of a community, the past that Hawley has spent so long running from begins to close in on them. Loo’s adolescent misadventures are interspersed with histories of the dozen bullet wounds that decorate Hawley’s body, the narrative nimbly flitting between past and present day until the two timelines merge in a deadly and devastating climax.

Cinematic in its scope, this expansive novel confidently dwells in the murky liminal spaces of human morality while exploring enduring topics of time, death, love and grief. Tinti has created a darkly daring (yet oddly uplifting) book that serves as a beguiling study in contrasts and contradictions, one that will leave readers pondering the conundrum of whether her protagonist is a good man who has done bad things or a bad man who has done good things. Expertly infusing old-fashioned storytelling with a modern sensibility, Tinti blends spaghetti Western, literary suspense and mythology to great success.

This article was originally published in the April 2017 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews