Strange But True
By John Searles
(William Morrow, Hardcover, 9780688175719, 320pp.)
Publication Date: August 2004
Other Editions of This Title: Paperback
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After a mysterious fall from his New York City apartment, Philip Chase has moved back home with his mother, Charlene, a bitter woman who has never fully accepted the death of her younger son, Ronnie, five years earlier. Numb from watching too much television, rereading a tragic biography, and trading snipes with his mother, Philip is in stasis.
But everything changes late one windy February night when Ronnie's high school girlfriend shows up on their doorstep. A sad young woman who still bears the scars of the accident that took Ronnie's life on the night of their prom, Melissa has unexpectedly found hope. She is nine months pregnant. And the father, she claims, is Ronnie.
So begins this startling tale, which moves from one breathless surprise to another as Philip and his mother confront not only Melissa's past but their own. Their desperate search for answers takes them on a poignant and emotional journey, ultimately placing them in the path of murder and revenge.
At once a moving story of redemption and a heart-stopping work of suspense, Strange but True confirms John Searles's place among the most gifted voices of his generation. Beautifully written and charged with a sublime wit, the novel brings to vibrant life a cast of characters that no reader will forget.
“’You know what’s coming next, but you don’t know all of it.’ This is the reason we keep reading.”
-San Francisco Chronicle
“Energetic and witty...the plot rocks.”
-New York Newsday
“This tale has a light, eccentric aspect....You’ll race right through it.”
-New York Times
-Cleveland Plain Dealer
“Imaginative and compelling....John Searles has created a novel that is sometimes eerie, sometimes thrilling, and always completely engaging.”
-Carolyn Parkhusrt, author of The Dogs of Babel
“This is a page-turner with characters you can never forget.”
-Lisa Scottoline, bestselling author of Killer Smile
“Funny, mysterious and poignant....John Searles has created a novel to reread and treasure.”
-Adriana Trigiani, bestselling author of Lucia, Lucia
“John Searles’ novel illuminates the intricate dynamics of families with humor, heart, and truth.”
-Augusten Burroughs, bestselling author of Running With Scissors and Dry
“A fine, unsettling novel with richly etched characters and a delicious sense of menace.”
-Dennis Lehane, author of Mystic River
“Searles’ portrayal of a family in collective emotional agony is spellbinding.”
“Pitch-perfect...this novel plays out as vividly as a movie....Who wouldn’t be sucked into this story?”