The Three-Day Affair

The Three-Day Affair

4.1 11
by Michael Kardos
     
 

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The first debut novel from the newly relaunched Mysterious Press introduces a phenomenal new voice in the realm of crime fiction.

Will, Jeffrey, and Nolan are lifelong friends. Each have gone their separate ways as adults, living their own lives while forging their own careers. They have no reason to believe anything extraordinary will befall them. Until one

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Overview


The first debut novel from the newly relaunched Mysterious Press introduces a phenomenal new voice in the realm of crime fiction.

Will, Jeffrey, and Nolan are lifelong friends. Each have gone their separate ways as adults, living their own lives while forging their own careers. They have no reason to believe anything extraordinary will befall them. Until one shocking moment changes everything…

Will is a part-time drummer who spends the rest of his time in recording studios. He has lived a sheltered existence. Then one night Jeffrey attempts to rob a convenience store, drags a young woman into Will’s car, and shouts a single word: “Drive!” Shaken and confused, Will obeys.

Suddenly three ordinary men find themselves completely out of their element, holding a young girl hostage without the slightest idea of what to do next. They are already guilty of kidnapping and robbery; it is only a matter of time before they find out just what else they’re capable of. For these four people, three days will decide their fate—between freedom and prison, innocence and guilt…and life and death. In the tradition of Scott Smith’s classic A Simple Plan, THE THREE-DAY AFFAIR marks the emergence of a truly talented new crime writer.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
A momentary lapse of judgment leads to dire consequences in Kardos’s excellent first novel, a crime thriller sure to please fans of Scott Smith’s A Simple Plan. Musician Will Walker has recovered, mostly, from the trauma of seeing a fellow band member killed right next to him, the innocent victim of a drive-by shooting, by the time he and his wife leave Manhattan for the New Jersey suburbs to start over. As the couple gear up for parenthood, Will notes that “violent crime was about the farthest thing from my mind, until the night when I helped one of my best friends kidnap a young woman.” That surprising crime follows the arrival in Newfield, N.J., of two college friends of Will’s, politician Nolan Albright and Internet millionaire Jeffrey Hocks, for a reunion. While the three are out for a drive, just after Will has persuaded the other two to invest in his plan to start a record label, Jeffrey emerges from a convenience store with a hostage in tow—for no good reason. Kardos (One Last Good Time, a story collection) makes the most of his intriguing setup, populated with plausible characters and enhanced by a vicious closing sting. Agent: Jody Klein, Brandt & Hochman Literary. (Sept.)
Library Journal
It was supposed to be another guys' weekend. Will, Jeffrey, Nolan, and Evan reunite every year for a few rounds of golf, some drinks, and reminiscing about their days at Princeton. But at this year's weekend, one shocking moment changes everything. Jeffrey wants cigarettes so they head to the nearest convenience store. After a few minutes, Jeffrey shoves a young woman into Will's car and orders him to drive. Confused and not knowing what else to do, Will obeys. What happens over the rest of the weekend, how they survive, and what their fate will be will keep readers on the edge of their seats. VERDICT This debut thriller (the first for the relaunched Mysterious Press) by an award-winning short story writer (One Last Good Time) takes you on an unexpected journey. As you read, you think you know which way the author is driving the narrative, only to have it swerve several times before the fascinating conclusion.—Robin Nesbitt, Hilltop Branch Lib.. Columbus, OH
Kirkus Reviews
This first novel from storyteller Kardos (One Last Good Time, 2010) leads three ordinary guys into a dark wood and turns the screws on them. Will Walker, ex-drummer and recording studio engineer, is trying to put away a little money for the child he and his wife, Cynthia, would like to have. And he'd like to raise funds to launch an indie label, Long-Shot Records. So he asks his Princeton buddies, attorney Evan Wolff, dot-com millionaire Jeffrey Hocks and Kansas City Senate-hopeful Nolan Albright, to forgo the usual glamorous destinations for their annual golf reunions and come instead to his town in New Jersey. The results are different, all right, but not in the way he intended. After Evan's begged off till the following morning, the other three drive to a Milk-n-Bread, where Will and Nolan wait outside till Jeffrey, whose stomach has been killing him, emerges not with antacids, but with the cashier in tow, pushes her into the car and demands that Will drive off. The tale that emerges is both incredible--Jeffrey, who'd lost all his money when the bubble burst, saw a chance to clean out the store's cash register, then decided he had to grab the cashier to prevent her from identifying him to the police--and impossible to resolve. No matter what they do now, all three buddies are already parties to robbery and kidnapping, and the only way they can see to cover their tracks is to take unimaginably irreversible measures. As they wrack their brains to come up with a way out of this mess, the odds of a fatal mischance keep rising. What if they're spotted by a neighborhood panhandler? Or by Will's boss? And what if they turn on each other? An agonizing moral nightmare interspersed with flashbacks to happier times whose import becomes clear only in the final chapter.
Booklist
“Chase’s reading humanizes the characters. . . . The surprise ending will please listeners of this engaging debut novel.”
Booklist

Criminal Element
“Chase’s reading humanizes the characters. . . . The surprise ending will please listeners of this engaging debut novel.”
Booklist

From the Publisher
“An agonizing moral nightmare interspersed with flashbacks to happier times whose import becomes clear only in the final chapter.”
Kirkus [starred review]

“Ray Chase narrates, his vocal quality, accents, and pacing flawless. Surprises abound in this suspense-filled, character-driven novel that is sure to please listeners who want more than just action in a thriller.”
Library Journal

“[Kardos’] first novel combines tension and thrills, with a welcome devotion to character development and quality writing.”
Criminal Element

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780802120267
Publisher:
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date:
09/04/2012
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
8.90(w) x 6.30(h) x 1.00(d)

What People are saying about this

Tom Perrotta
“Michael Kardos’s soulful stories take place in that hard-luck corner of New Jersey where rock and roll dreams crash into blue-collar reality.”
—Tom Perrotta

Meet the Author


Michael Kardos is the author of the story collection One Last Good Time. His short stories have appeared in The Southern Review, Crazyhorse, Prairie Schooner, Blackbird, Pleiades, Prism International, and many other magazines and anthologies, and were cited as notable stories in the 2009 and 2010 editions of Best American Short Stories. He lives in Starkville, Mississippi, where he co-directs the creative writing program at Mississippi State University and edits the literary journal Jabberwock Review.

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