A Dual Inheritance is an engrossing novel of passion, friendship, betrayal and class - and their reverberations across generations.
Autumn 1962: Ed Cantowitz and Hugh Shipley meet in their final year at Harvard. Ed is far removed from Hugh's privileged upbringing as a Boston Brahmin, yet his drive and ambition outpace Hugh's ambivalence about his own life. These two young men form an unlikely friendship, bolstered by a fierce shared desire to transcend their circumstances. But in just a few short years, not only do their paths diverge-one rising on Wall Street, the other becoming a kind of global humanitarian-but their friendship ends abruptly, with only one of them understanding why.
Can a friendship define your view of the world? Spanning from the Cuban Missile Crisis to the present-day stock market collapse, with locations as diverse as Dar es Salaam, Boston, Shenzhen, and Fishers Island, A Dual Inheritance asks this question, as it follows not only these two men, but the complicated women in their vastly different lives. And as Ed and Hugh grow further and further apart, they remain uniquely-even surprisingly-connected.
A Dual Inheritance is a big, captivating, multigenerational sweep of a romance, ranging from Africa to China to New England's blue-blooded enclaves. With deftness and swagger, Joanna Hershon spins the intertwining of two Harvard men's lives into a searching exploration of class and destiny in late twentieth-century America
Hershon writes with great confidence and clarity. You feel secure in her every chiselled sentence as the novel moves forward through the years and across continents, to Tanzania, Haiti and New York. Great stuff - Daily Mail
A warm, smart, enjoyably complex novel . . . A Dual Inheritance is an old-fashioned social novel that feels fresh because of its deft, clear-eyed approach to still-unspoken rules about ethnicity, money and identity - San Francisco Chronicle
Hershon artfully guides us through the lives of Ed and Hugh, college buddies who meet at Harvard in the '60s, shifting between their perspectives through adulthood to detail their lingering impact on one another's lives in such a way that it'll make you take a second look at all of your relationships - GQ