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About James Kestrel
Formerly a bar owner, a criminal defense investigator, and an English teacher, James Kestrel is now an attorney practicing throughout the Pacific. His writing has won advance praise from Stephen King, James Patterson, Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Meg Gardiner, James Fallows, Pico Iyer, and numerous other authors. A sailor and world traveler, Kestrel has lived in Taiwan, New Orleans, and a West Texas ghost town. He lives in Volcano, Hawaii.
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“War, imprisonment, torture, romance…The novel has an almost operatic symmetry, and Kestrel turns a beautiful phrase.”
New York Times
Five Decembers is a gripping thriller, a staggering portrait of war, and a heartbreaking love story, as unforgettable as All the Light We Cannot See.
nominated for Best Novel in the 2022 EDGAR AWARDS
NOMINATED FOR BEST THRILLER IN THE 2022 BARRY AWARDS
FINALIST FOR THE HAMMETT PRIZE 2021
"Read this book for its palpitating story, its perfect emotional and physical detailing and, most of all, for its unforgettable conjuring of a steamy quicksilver world that will be new to almost every reader."
December 1941. America teeters on the brink of war, and in Honolulu, Hawaii, police detective Joe McGrady is assigned to investigate a homicide that will change his life forever. Because the trail of murder he uncovers will lead him across the Pacific, far from home and the woman he loves; and though the U.S. doesn't know it yet, a Japanese fleet is already steaming toward Pearl Harbor.
This extraordinary novel is so much more than just a gripping crime story—it's a story of survival against all odds, of love and loss and the human cost of war. Spanning the entirety of World War II, FIVE DECEMBERS is a beautiful, masterful, powerful novel that will live in your memory forever.