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A World I Never Made
by James Lepore

Published: 2009-04
Hardcover : 262 pages
2 members reading this now
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2 members have read this book
Recommended to book clubs by 3 of 3 members
Pat Nolan, an American man, is summoned to Paris to claim the body of his estranged daughter Megan, who has committed suicide. The body, however, is not Megan's and it becomes instantly clear to Pat that Megan staged this, that she is in serious trouble, and that she is calling to him for ...
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Introduction

(Pat Nolan, an American man, is summoned to Paris to claim the body of his estranged daughter Megan, who has committed suicide. The body, however, is not Megan's and it becomes instantly clear to Pat that Megan staged this, that she is in serious trouble, and that she is calling to him for help.

This sends Pat on an odyssey that stretches across France and into the Czech Republic and that makes him the target of both the French police and a band of international terrorists. Joining Pat on his search is Catherine Laurence, a beautiful but tormented Paris detective who sees in Pat something she never thought she'd find--genuine passion and desperate need. As they look for Megan, they come closer to each other's souls and discover love when both had long given up on it.

Juxtaposed against this story is Megan's story. A freelance journalist, Megan is in Morocco to do research when she meets Abdel Lahani, a Saudi businessman. They begin a torrid affair, a game Megan has played often and well in her adult life. But what she discovers about Lahani puts her in the center of a different kind of game, one with rules she can barely comprehend. Because of her relationship with Lahani, Megan has made some considerable enemies. And she has put the lives of many--maybe even millions--at risk.

A World I Never Made is an atmospheric novel of suspense with brilliantly drawn characters and back-stories as compelling as the plot itself. It is the kind of novel that resonates deeply and leaves its traces long after you turn the final page.

Editorial Review

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Excerpt

I don't owe you or anybody an explanation but I think you'll appreciate the irony of a suicide note coming from a person who has abhorred tradition all of her life. I met a young girl on the street the other day who looked into my eyes and told me that Jesus was waiting for me in heaven. She was fourteen or so, selling flowers--on the Street of Flowers--and had the look of a young Madonna. The red roses I bought from her were the last thing I saw before pulling the trigger. If, as you read this, I am actually with Jesus in heaven I will be one shocked woman. I doubt it though. Megan Nolan is no more. Go and have yourself another daughter. Its not too late, and the odds are very good that she will turn out better than I did. If I were famous I would be joining the long line of suicides known to history, but as it is in a matter of days if not hours my life and death will be as anonymous and as forgotten as a stray breeze. Megan. P.S. You know how I feel about being buried. Please, no service and a quick cremation. Don't let me down. ... view entire excerpt...

Discussion Questions

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Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

I had written two other novels and although they had not gotten published, I was determined to keep on writing. One night I was told a very sad story about a young woman who had committed suicide and left a taped message to each of her parents and siblings. This woman had been seemingly happy. But what if she had had reason to be angry at one of her loved ones? What was on those cassettes? What story did they tell?

I have good relationships with my daughters, but I got to thinking about a father-daughter relationship that had gone wrong, that had given the daughter reason to be bitter, and angry at her father.

In his novel, The Man With The Golden Arm, Nelson Algren said (I'm paraphrasing) that those closest to our hearts tread heaviest upon them. From this seemingly simple statement of fact springs much if not all of human drama. Algren's words have resonated with me since I read them over twenty years ago. It is a given that we hurt each other. But it is equally true, I believe, that redemption is offered to us, often in ways that we would never have imagined possible.

These thoughts were the genesis of A World I Never Made, whose central theme is, if I had to put in a few words, redemption and the courage it takes to seek it.

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Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
 
  "A World I never Made"by nbaker (see profile) 07/24/12

My son has served two tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and I sometimes have difficulty reading stories that deal with terrorists and/or fanatic Muslims. However, I was drawn into this story from a parent's... (read more)

 
  "A World I Never Made"by miltfamily (see profile) 10/15/09

 
  "A world I never made"by papp.mlodz (see profile) 10/15/09

great book

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