Every-lost-country

One of the publicists here at work is my go-to person for book recommendations. Steven Heighton???s Every Lost Country??is one of her picks and as usual she???s bang on.

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Lewis Book is a humanitarian doctor whose history of becoming involved in conflict far from home is likely to blame for the end of his marriage. He joins a climbing expedition in Nepal as the group???s medic, taking his troubled teenaged daughter Sophie with him.?? The expedition is led by Wade Lawson, arrogant, single-minded and driven to restore a?? reputation badly damaged by the disastrous end to his last expedition. The group is also accompanied by Amaris McRae, a small but strong-willed Chinese-Canadian filmmaker.

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Sophie likes to watch the sun set over the Himalayas from her perch on the border between China and Nepal. One evening, as she???s doing so, she spies a group of Tibetan refugees fleeing from Chinese soldiers. As shots ring out, Amaris starts to film, and Dr. Book runs to the aid of the victims.?? Furious, the soldiers capture the surviving refugees and take Book and Amaris into custody. Thus begins a fast-paced, suspenseful narrative. Sophie abandons the remaining group in search of her father, as Lawson, undeterred, stays the course and attempts to climb the mountain despite the tragic events.

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Inspired by true events, this book has a fascinating plot that keeps you turning the pages. Heighton???s characterization is also terrific: even the megalomaniac Lawson is fully realized, and I felt some empathy towards him, despite his selfishness. But most interesting are the thought-provoking themes the novel explores: responsibility, altruism, accountability, redemption. Should you put your own family first, or is there a duty to serve the greater good? Is violence ever justified?

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??Read an excerpt from the novel here.

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Steven Heighton???s website.

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