From the bestselling author of The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon comes a novel that takes the reader on an epic journey from war-ravaged nineteenth-century Europe to antebellum America.
In Zimler's dazzling tale, John Zarco Stewart is an impish child of bold inquisitiveness, the unwitting inheritor of a faith shrouded in 300 years of secrecy. Dark and bitter events put an end to his innocence and almost destroy him, but he is healed by the arrival in his household of a mysterious young man from Africa.
Midnight is a freed slave brought to Porto by John's seafaring father, and he becomes John's greatest friend, ultimately determining the course of his life. But as John grows to manhood Midnight is lost to him, Napoleon's armies invade Portugal, and John's fragile peace is shattered as he uncovers truths and lies hidden by those he most loved and trusted. At last he leaves for America, to hunt for hope in a land shackled by unforgivable sin.
This magnificent new literary epic, a moving love story crossed with sweeping historical novel, is a worthy successor to Zimler's The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon, published in 1998 to huge success, and so far selling over 60,000 copies with reviews to match. Pre-publication, Hunting Midnight has already attracted much attention and looks set to do even better.
I defy anyone to put this book down. It's a wonderful novel: a big, bold-hearted love story that will sweep you up and take you, uncomplaining, on a journey full of heartbreak and light. - The Observer
A gripping adventure story, which can also be read at deeper levels . . . enthralling. - Michael Eaude, The Independent
Nicholas Shakespeare, author of Bruce Chatwin and The Dancer Upstairs - This epic narrative . . . is pacey and accesible without ever patronising the reader; deeply moving
Richard Zimler was born in Manhasset, New York. After gaining degrees in comparative religion from Duke University and in journalism from Stanford University, he worked as a journalist. In 1990, he moved to Porto, Portugal, where he has taught journalism for the last twelve years.
He has published four novels since 1996: Unholy Ghosts, The Angelic Darkness, The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon -- named 1998 Book of the Year by three British critics and a bestseller in eleven countries -- and Hunting Midnight, also a bestseller.
Zimler has won many prizes for his writing, and has lectured on Portuguese-Jewish culture all over the world. When not writing, he enjoys gardening at his weekend house in the north of Portugal.