During the spring of 2012, as the faultlines in American society widen, a puzzling death in a small Ohio town draws a university archivist into a mysterious entanglement of the shifting realities of paranoid politics, antique acquisitions, mid-west college life, and newly discovered letters by Harriett Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. In this story of friendship and its obligations, award-winning writer Richard Teleky returns to the narrator of his much praised novel Pack Up the Moon, now twenty years older and wiser, to continue an exploration of longing, loss, and the passing of time.
Praise for The Blue Hour
“The Blue Hour is a compelling meditation on the irreplaceable comforts of friendship, the lengths we sometimes go to sustain it, and the devastating price of its loss, but cleverly woven as a murder mystery so that we learn its lessons subconsciously in a way that makes them stick. A totally compulsive read.”
–Rosemary Sullivan, author of Stalin’s Daughter: The Extraordinary and Tumultuous Life of Svetlana Alliluyeva
“Proof positive that not all mysteries have to be about blood and maniacs, The Blue Hour is an absorbing whodunit related by a wry narrator. It’s also a meditation on friendship and its discontents (with a side order of Aristotle)–the perfect companion to an autumn afternoon and a glass of good whiskey.”
–Giles Blunt, author of The Hesitation Cut, Until the Night, and the John Cardinal series
“Although this timely novel by Teleky (Winter in Hollywood) is set in small-town Ohio, it also takes place in the broader context of the rift that runs through, and threatens, the fabric of American life. The narrator, a 60-something archivist, recounts the dissolution of his friendship with Nick and Hedy Anton, antique dealers and Tea Party enthusiasts. Despite changing political opinions and values, the three have managed to stay friends for decades. But when Nick and Hedy’s grown son, Guy, dies suddenly in what appears to be an accident, the friendship begins to fray. The narrator uncovers truths about Guy that run counter to the Antons’ cherished illusions about their son, deepening lines of division and alienation. A clutch of contemporary themes and topics defines this tangled yarn which Teleky handles dexterously, gently pulling at threads – war memorabilia and its connections to conspiracy theories, an older gay man trying to save his heterosexual marriage, a fiery feminist in a destructive relationship – without ever undoing the knot at the core. This serves the novel well, as it allows readers to consider the here and now without trying to imagine what ought to be – either with the lives of the characters or the life of the nation. It’s a clever and topical tale for the times.”
– Publishers Weekly
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