House of Sand and Fog
In this stunning novel Andre Dubus III set in present-day California a story of human conflict that has the power and resonance of a classical tragedy. Working on a road crew in California, a former colonel in the Shah's Air Force yearns to restore his family's dignity. When an attractive bungalow comes up at a country auction for a fraction of its value, he sees an opportunity to dream his own American Dream, for himself, his wife and children. But for the house's former owner, a recovering alcoholic and addict down on her luck, the loss of her father's house is the latest in a series of insults life has dealt her. When he becomes involved with a married policeman who takes up her cause, the stage is set for a gut-wrenching tragedy, which keeps the reader gripped and moved to the last page. Dubus has an extraordinary ability to get us inside each of his characters, to see the world as it is for each of them. These are ordinary people, people just looking for a small piece of ground to stand on, driven by the same ordinary needs into inevitable conflict - a conflict in which even the reader, rooting for all of them, has no safe haven. Unfolding relentlessly from its opening pages, House of Sand and Fog is a narrative triumph. It turns both the traditional immigrant success story and a modern love story upside down with a heartrending outcome, combining American realism with a Shak.

No Review