Rick Rodgers, Mr. Boston, Jonathan Pogash
Colum McCann's most ambitious work to date, Apeirogon--named for a shape with a countably infinite number of sides--is a tour de force concerning friendship, love, loss, and belonging. Bassam Aramin is Palestinian. Rami Elhanan is Israeli. They inhabit a world of conflict that colors every aspect of their daily lives, from the roads they are allowed to drive on to the schools their daughters, Abir and Smadar, each attend, to the checkpoints both physical and emotional that they must negotiate. Their worlds shift irreparably after ten-year-old old Abir is killed by a rubber bullet and thirteen-year-old Smadar becomes the victim of suicide bombers. When Bassam and Rami learn of one another's stories, they recognize the loss that connects them and they attempt to use their grief as a weapon for peace. McCann crafts Apeirogon out of a universe of fictional and non-fictional material. He crosses centuries and continents, stitching time, art, history, nature, and politics together in a tale both heartbreaking and hopeful. Musical, cinematic, muscular, delicate, and soaring, Apeirogon is a novel for our times.