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Hunting Midnight (Zarco 2)

Hunting Midnight (Zarco 2) [Kindle Edition]

4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Product Description


This warm-hearted novel spans three continents through the lifetime of its narrator, John Zarco Stewart. He is seven years old when we first meet him in his home town of Porto - the year is 1798 and he is waiting out a storm in an old bookshop. An impulsive child, half-Scottish, he soon makes friends with another street urchin and before long they are getting up to mischief. One day, when they are setting free birds from their market cages, John feels a grasp at his shoulder. A strange man with glinting eyes reveals to John a secret: that he is Jewish, not Portuguese - a dangerous thing to be in the Iberian Peninsula, where Jews have been hiding their faith for three hundred years. Soon after, his father returns from a sea voyage with Midnight, a bushman from Africa who measures his age by the year the wildflowers blossomed. Though John initially dislikes him, one evening he finds out just what a good friend Midnightcan be...Themany-layered, mysticalstory twists and turns through landscapes of all colours. While its paceand ambitious breadth of vision sometimes detracts from characterisation, overall the narrative is an engaging, easy read. --Kirkus UK

Nicholas Shakespeare, author of Bruce Chatwin and the Dancer Upstairs

'I defy anyone to put this book down. It's a wonderful novel.@

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 863 KB
  • Print Length: 514 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0385336470
  • Publisher: Constable (5 July 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005AE68ES
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #180,767 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Richard Zimler was born in Roslyn Heights, a suburb of New York, in 1956. After earning a bachelor's degree in comparative religion from Duke University (1977) and a master's degree in journalism from Stanford University (1982), he worked for eight years as a journalist, mainly in the San Francisco Bay area. In 1990, he moved to Porto, Portugal, where he taught journalism for sixteen years, first at the College of Journalism and later at the University of Porto.

Richard has published nine novels over the last 17 years. In chronological order, they are: The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon, Unholy Ghosts, The Angelic Darkness, Hunting Midnight, Guardian of the Dawn, The Search for Sana, The Seventh Gate, The Warsaw Anagrams and The Night Watchman. His novels have appeared on bestseller lists in 12 different countries, including the USA, Great Britain, Portugal, Italy, Brazil and Australia. His books have been published in 23 languages.

Richard has won numerous prizes for his work, including the Marquis de Ouro prize in 2010 - as Book of the Year in Portugal - for The Warsaw Anagrams. This prize is voted on by high school teachers and students. He also won the 2009 Alberto Benveniste prize in fiction for Guardian of the Dawn (for best Jewish-themed novel published in France), and the 1998 Herodotus Award, for The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon (Best First Historical Novel). Additionally, The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon was picked as 1998 Book of the Year by three British critics. Hunting Midnight, The Search for Sana, The Seventh Gate and The Warsaw Anagrams have all been nominated for the International IMPAC Literary Award, the richest prize in the English-speaking world. He was also granted a 1994 U.S. National Endowment of the Arts Fellowship in Fiction.

The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon, Hunting Midnight, Guardian of the Dawn and The Seventh Gate form the "Sephardic Cycle," a group of inter-connected - but fully independent - novels about different branches and generations of a Portuguese Jewish family.

His latest novel, The Night Watchman, was a bestseller for three months in Portugal during the fall of 2013. It will be published in the UK, Ireland, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand in June of 2014.

A short film he wrote and acted in - The Slow Mirror - was awarded the Best Drama award at the 2010 New York Downtown Short Film Festival.

When Richard is not writing, he enjoys gardening at his weekend house in the north of Portugal.

Here is a synopsis of my new novel, THE NIGHT WATCHMAN:

When can a single crime reveal the depth of the moral crisis undermining a nation?

July 6, 2012... Chief Inspector Henrique Monroe is summoned to a luxurious Lisbon mansion to investigate the slaying of a construction magnate named Pedro Coutinho. The handsome 59-year-old has been gagged so cruelly that he choked to death before bleeding out from the bullet wound in his gut. On the wall behind him, five Japanese characters - ディアーナ - have been written in blood. After questioning the victim's guilt-ridden daughter, Henrique comes to believe that Coutinho might have been killed for defending the troubled teenager from the violent sexual advances of a family friend. And yet files on a hidden flash-drive he soon finds indicate that the victim may have been silenced by any one of a number of politicians whom he'd bribed in order to win construction contracts.

Henrique has occasionally alienated his police colleagues with his extraordinarily observant but wildly erratic behavior at crime scenes, and as he investigates Coutinho's murder, his conduct becomes ever more peculiar. We come to learn that he was severely abused during his childhood in rural Colorado and that a uniquely intuitive and highly protective guardian took over his mind and body when the mistreatment became impossible to bear. As Henrique struggles to keep the walls of his identity from crumbling in, another member of the victim's family dies under mysterious circumstances, destroying any chance he has of continuing to keep his alter-ego a secret.

In this uniquely moving portrait of a troubled police detective, Zimler has created a chilling psychological mystery that explores the ongoing effects of child abuse. Along the way, he has also given us a sensitive portrait of contemporary Portugal, a country just waking up to how badly it has been betrayed by a corrupt elite and suffering under the weight of its own historical errors.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I wish I could write like Richard Zimler as he's that rare combination of a great storyteller who can write in a literary, yet, accessible style, which is emotional without being overly sentimental.

John Zarco Stewart, the main protagonist, is an engaging and complex character, whose relationships with his friends, Daniel, Violeta and especially Midnight, the African John's father rescues from slavery, dominate John's story. I've been on an emotional journey with John as he crossed continents and comes to term with his own humanity and that of those surround him. Zimler's prose and magical mixing of history and fiction is superb, but at the heart of the novel are his characters. Midnight, the Bushman who sometimes drinks so much that his belly swells to near bursting. John Stewart Zarco whose family is destroyed by betrayal and who is quick to adapt and learn that he cannot always has what he wants, but also discovers the redemption that comes through love and the power of freedom. Superb and never sentimental, this novel portrays the evils of slavery and how a person's spirit is buried alive, 'only one stone at a time' and that 'slavery keeps our spirits rom fulfillment and realization.'
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
By KitChat
This is a long book at over 600 pages of small print, but I devoured it in a little over two days. I even got up to continue reading it in the middle of the night when I couldn't sleep, I needed to know where it was taking me.
It's sometimes strange being given a novel as a gift, but the friends who gave this to me got it just right even though we haven't known each other long. It was favourably reviewed in the 'Algarve Resident' so they purchased it at the Griffin Bookshop in Almancil,Portugal, which serves the English-speaking community of the Algarve so well.
The connection with Portugal is that the book starts in Oporto in 1800. Napoleon is marching across Europe and the Jews of Portugal, although 'hidden' and baptised, are suffering the threat of a renewed Inquisition. Although some of the consequences of this are frightening and unjust, John, the hero of the tale is from a loving and open minded background, which somehow tempers the violence and injustice. I identified with John strongly, being both Jewish and having a Scottish father myself, and I spend a few months a year in Portugal. My family might also have welcomed an African stranger into their family as did John's.
The story proceeds from here into areas of mysticism and connections with nature, folk medicine and the Earth. Into this are interwoven tales of love and desire, of loss and tragedy and an epic search over Continents. I cried when I finished reading the book, not because it was sad, but it had touched my emotions so many times I couldn't bear the ending of it. It is now out on loan to special friends who will appreciate it.... but I shall want it back soon to re-read and return to the adventure. I'm sure I shall cry again!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good paced, absorbing novel. 5 May 2004
For someone who enjoys a good mind absorbing novel, this is a great one to try, that is a bit different from other novels. It charts the developing friendship between a young lad and his family with a freed slave who is also a 'healer'. Then, without spoiling the plot, something happens that tears the friendship apart. Join the lad as he journeys from childhood with his tragic friends, through adulthood where he discovers what happened in his family's past, and then as he searches in America for his long lost friend.
Pretty much 'un-put-downable'!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absorbing - Heart wrenching - Engaging 30 April 2013
By Cath
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The more I read the more involved I became. I cried often as the way it was written you could truly feel for the characters I felt overwhelmed. Did not see the twist of plot coming. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hunting Midnight (Zarco 2) 11 Jun 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I picked up this book to read on a long flight. Didn't know the author. Loved the book - possibly about the best I have ever read. Beautifully written. It became my choice for the local Book Club thoroughly enjoyed it. Excellent service from seller.
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