Chasing the Sun
Author: Natalia Sylvester
Published: June 3/14
Publisher: New Harvest
Source: A complimentary copy was provided by the publisher and TLC book tours in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
Partially inspired by her grandfather’s kidnapping in Peru, CHASING THE SUN: A Novel (Lake Union/New Harvest; on sale June 3, 2014) is Natalia Sylvester’s suspenseful debut about a man whose wife is kidnapped just as their marriage is falling apart.
After going out for an errand, Marabela Jimenez doesn’t return home and her husband suspects she has left him – again. Only, the next day a letter arrives in the mail that reads:
Querido Andres,I’m being held by three men who say they’ll keep me safe as long as you cooperate. They say that means no cops and no media. They say they’ll call when they’re ready to talk to you. Kiss our children for me and tell them not to worry. Keep me in your thoughts as I will be keeping you in mine.Marabela
Despite their crumbling relationship, Andres quickly realizes he must do whatever it takes to get Marabela home. He can’t possibly afford the ransom the kidnappers demand or handle this threat to his family alone so he hires a consultant to help negotiate with the terrorists. He also reaches out to his estranged mother, who has never cared for Marabela and even reconnects with an old friend who may hold the key to his past and his wife’s future. As each day passes without the return of his wife, Andres is forced to come to terms with whether or not what he and Marabela have left is worth saving and how far he’ll go to bring her home.
Set against the backdrop of the political turmoil and terrorist threats of 1992 Peru,CHASING THE SUN is a story of how trauma has a way of exposing our most difficult truths and healing past wounds and regrets.
Beautiful Peru, she is alluring. During the time of civil unrest, however, that beauty is torn to reveal an undercurrent of danger. Kidnappings are not unusual so when Marabella disappears, the horrific visions of torture are not far behind.
Marabella and Andres have a strained marriage. They've struggled but Andres doesn't give up so easily. Even when Marabella disappeared and returned in a few days, he forgave. This time is different. A note arrives from the kidnappers demanding a grand sum in exchange for the return of his wife. Andres wants her back but he doesn't have the money they've demanded.
Andres' mother comes to his aid and with her assistance and that of a consultant, Andres goes about the effort to free Marabella but not without trepidation. On one hand, he must save her. On the other, his marriage is battle worn and he's unsure of its stability. Knowing his wife and the possible torment she may sustain during her captivity, Andres fears for the remnants of his marriage. How will this affect her and ultimately him and their family, assuming she is freed?
The cover of this hardbound debut novel is beautiful in its selection of colours. Never for a moment does it belie what author Natalia Sylvester has created therein. Chasing the Sun is a suspenseful tale of the terror one faces when someone they love is kidnapped and the lengths to which one is willing to go to save the person they love. It's a tale of love and strife, pain and anguish, and the hope for reunited and reignited love amidst the beautiful backdrop of Peru and the terrorism of a country in turmoil. A fabulous read by a debut author, Chasing the Sun's plot will hold you fast until you've finished the last page.
Natalia Sylvester was born in Lima, Peru. She came to the U.S. at age four and grew up in South Florida, where she received a B.A. in creative writing from the University of Miami. A former magazine editor, Natalia now works as a freelance writer in Austin, Texas.
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