In this hypnotically beautiful debut novel, Mark, a young war photographer, returns to New York after being slightly injured in a Third World brushfire war. He had spent a few frightening days in the recovery ward of a dilapidated, overcrowded hospital, but can this explain his sleeplessness, distraction, his wounds' inability to heal? Elena, Mark's Spanish girlfriend, grows more and more alarmed by his strange behavior, while she also tries to calm her pregnant friend Diane, whose photographer husband has gone missing in the same war zone. As Mark continues to deteriorate, Elena's grandfather sweeps onto the scene. Joaquin is the last person from whom Elena wants to accept help; once very close to him, she ended all contact after learning of his role in "purifying" conscience-stricken officers after the Spanish Civil War. In treating Mark, Joaquin sees a way back into his granddaughter's life, and, despite Elena's disapproval, the two men begin to forge an extraordinary relationship. Eventually, all three travel to Joaquin's manor home in southern Spain so that Mark can find a safe haven in which to heal. It is in this romantic and haunted Spanish valley where both men's secrets surface with life-altering force and where Mark and Elena attempt to know and love each other again. Reminiscent of the work of Tim O'Brien and Philip Caputo, this stunning novel is informed by Scott Anderson's experiences reporting on combat around the globe. A literary page-turner about the aftermath of war in the lives of survivors and their loved ones, Triage introduces a major new voice in American fiction.
New York : Scribner, 1998.
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