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"[Hisham Matar] writes with both a novelist's eye for physical and emotional detail, and a reporter's tactile sense of place and time. The prose is precise, economical, chiseled; the narrative elliptical, almost musical. . . . The Return is, at once, a suspenseful detective story about a writer investigating his father's fate at the hands of a brutal dictatorship, and a son's efforts to come to terms with his father's ghost, who has haunted more than half his life by his absence." --Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times " The Return is a personal memoir, concerned with the kidnap and disappearance of the writer's father at the hands of the Qaddafi regime. It is wise and agonizing and thrilling to read." --Zadie Smith "What a brilliant book. Hisham Matar has the quality all historians--of the world and the self--most need: He knows how to stand back and let the past speak. In chronicling his quest for his father, his manner is fastidious, even detached, but his anger is raw and unreconciled; through his narrative art he bodies out the shape of loss and gives a universality to his very particular experience of desolation. The Return reads as easily as a thriller, but is a story that will stick: A person is lost, but gravity and resonance remain." --Hilary Mantel " The Return is a riveting book about love and hope, but it is also a moving meditation on grief and loss. It draws a memorable portrait of a family in exile and manages also to explore the politics of Libya with subtlety and steely intelligence. It is a quest for the truth in a dark time, constructed with a novelist's skill, written in tones that are both precise and passionate. It is likely to become a classic." --Colm Tóibín "A triumph of art over tyranny, structurally thrilling, intensely moving, The Return is a treasure for the ages." --Peter Carey " The Return is tremendously powerful. Although it filled me with rage again and again, I never lost sight of Matar's beautiful intelligence as he tried to get to the heart of the mystery. I am so very grateful he has written this book." --Nadeem Aslam