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“Eerie and timely, Leave the World Behind will be the next book to talk about. Rumaan Alam is now solidified as a must-read author for me. He lures the reader in with excellent character development as well as family drama when the book takes a sudden turn. Slowly and masterfully, he starts building tension and suspense while teasing the reader with ominous threats in the background. Before you know it, you’ve stayed up half the night racing to the end of the book. It’s a fast read but a powerful book asking important questions.”
— Katerina Argyres (OLD RECORD), Bookshop West Portal, San Francisco, CA
“It starts out as an unremarkable family vacation, then slowly, a mounting sense of dread begins to take over. As claustrophobia and confusion grow, you begin to realize, along with the characters, that the world will never be the same...”
— Marisa Neyenhuis, Chapter One Book Store (MT), Hamilton, MT
LONGLISTED FOR THE 2020 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD IN FICTION
A Recommended Book From Vogue * TIME * The Washington Post * Buzzfeed * The Boston Globe * The Wall Street Journal * Vulture * Newsweek * NY Observer * Refinery29 * The New York Post * Town & Country * Parade * The Millions * PopSugar * AARP * Publishers Weekly * Apartment Therapy * Kirkus * LA Mag * BookPage * Alma * Lit Hub * The Week
A magnetic novel about two families, strangers to each other, who are forced together on a long weekend gone terribly wrong
Amanda and Clay head out to a remote corner of Long Island expecting a vacation: a quiet reprieve from life in New York City, quality time with their teenage son and daughter, and a taste of the good life in the luxurious home they've rented for the week. But a late-night knock on the door breaks the spell. Ruth and G. H. are an older couple--it's their house, and they've arrived in a panic. They bring the news that a sudden blackout has swept the city. But in this rural area--with the TV and internet now down, and no cell phone service--it's hard to know what to believe.
Should Amanda and Clay trust this couple--and vice versa? What happened back in New York? Is the vacation home, isolated from civilization, a truly safe place for their families? And are they safe from one other?
Suspenseful and provocative, Rumaan Alam's third novel is keenly attuned to the complexities of parenthood, race, and class. Leave the World Behind explores how our closest bonds are reshaped--and unexpected new ones are forged--in moments of crisis.