The novel features two main narratives in alternating chapters. The first narrative is set in Khon Kaen Thailand in 1970. This narrative follows the developing love story between Tuum and Roong. Tuum is a high school mathematics teacher and Roong has been forced to work in a wealthy family’s home to pay off a family debt. As they fall deeply in love, Roong’s circumstances become more precarious and dangerous. The second narrative in present day Thailand follows Canadian ex-pat Ed Linn, married to Nan, a Thai woman. While Ed is helping her great uncle Song harvest his rice crop, he witnesses a murder. He soon learns that there are very powerful and complicated connections between him and the murder victim. Over time these connections get more and more complicated and eventually this narrative converges with the first narrative.
About the author
Robert Hilles lives on Salt Spring Island with his partner Pearl Luke. In 1994, he won the Governor General’s Award for Poetry for Cantos from a Small Room. In the same year, his first novel, Raising of Voices, won the Writers Guild of Alberta George Bugnet Award for best novel. He has published fourteen books of poetry and five books of prose. His other books include: Finding The Lights On, Near Morning, Nothing Vanishes, Kissing The Smoke, Breathing Distance, Somewhere Between Obstacles and Pleasure, Higher Ground, Wrapped Within Again, Slow Ascent, and Partake. Wrapped Within Again, New and Selected Poems was published in the fall of 2003 and won the Stephan G. Stephansson Award for best book of poetry. His second novel, A Gradual Ruin, was published by Doubleday Canada in 2004 and now is in paperback. His books have also been shortlisted for The Milton Acorn People’s Poetry Prize, The W.O. Mitchell/City of Calgary Prize, The Stephan Stephansson Award, and The Howard O’Hagan Award. His second non-fiction book, Calling the Wild, was published in the fall of 2005 from Black Moss Press. His thirteenth book of poetry, Slow Ascent was published in the fall of 2006. He currently at work on a new novel titled The Smallest Detail, A short story collection tentatively called A Glimmer, and a new poetry collection called Thru and Thru. His latest collection of poems called Partake came out in Spring 2010 from Black Moss Press. Samples of his work are available on his website or Wattpad. His readings are available to watch at his Youtube channel.