Harper Perennial, Paperback, 9780061929892, 376pp.
Publication Date: January 1, 2011
Passionate and brilliantly rendered, Small Wars questions how honor can exist amid cruelty and asks what becomes of intimacy in the grinding gears of empire.
A major in the British Army, Hal Treherne is a dedicated soldier on the brink of a brilliant career. He is eager to lead his men into combat; his wife, Clara, however, is relieved when they are posted instead to seemingly peaceful sun-kissed Cyprus. But war erupts over unification with Greece, the island is consumed by violenceand Hal discovers that his military training cannot help him navigate the minefields of moral compromise that lie beneath every battle he fights. Clara grows fearful of her increasingly distant husband. When she needs him most, she finds the once-tender Hal a changed mana betrayal that is only part of the shocking personal crisis to come.
“In lean, penetrating prose...Jones serves her themes most potently with an unflinching tumble of violent encounters that effectively transform Hal’s liberation...into a haunting act of transcendence.”
-New York Times Book Review
“A taut and transfixing novel… [Jones is] a gifted young author.”
“A darkly compelling account of honor and disillusionment with contemporary resonance…a confirmation of [Jones’s] considerable talent.”
“Ambitious and thematically charged…A timely novel, as well as a harrowing one”
-Christian Science Monitor
“To this grave account of degradation—from great wars to small, from certainty to doubt, from romance to resignation—Jones brings surprising reserves of energy and finesse.”
-Donna Rifkind, Washington Post