I started reading this immediately after the brilliant Floating Staircase and it was a completely different experience. It tells the story of Nick D'Nofrio, Afghanistan war veteran recuperating at the Paradis d'Hotel in the Carolinas with his girlfriend Emma. It's a dark journey into the mind of a mentally drained and wounded soldier, a tough uncompromising read but well worth the effort. There are some great and wonderful characters including the mysterious Isabella Rosales, a talented jazz player, and the ghost of a long dead comrade Myles Granger. Ever so slowly Nick's world begins to unravel as the blackness in his soul threatens to drown him and destroy his marriage. Malfi is a marvelous writer creating memorable tormented characters in his own special elegant style of prose and this book is highly recommended.