"A thoughtfully crafted masterwork--and a wholly American tragedy." -- The Oregonian
Three lives on the verge of ruin intersect in the small Oregon town of Amity: Pika, a half-Samoan ex-con from California, seeks to deliver justice to his sister’s rapist; Michael, a five-tour Iraq War Marine, faces the cracked mirror of his own embattled soul; and Sissy, a recent convert to Catholicism, must resist the lure of ruthless self-judgment and discover what love is.
Determined to escape the past, these characters find themselves sharing the same torn-down house, bordering tweaker poverty and bucolic wine country. Violence and penance, family and legacy, recidivism and post-traumatic stress disorder linger with the heavy rain of desperation. At the center of this storm is five-year old Benji, whose wide-eyed energy and openhearted faith could show all of them how to still be saved.
In this unforgettable tale, award-winning author Peter Nathaniel Malae explores the depths of human pain and trauma with cultural authority. Son of Amity is a novel whose voices cry out with truth and vulnerability, never betraying that slight tilt toward hope needed to make the long, hard trek to tomorrow.
"From the farthest, wettest corner of war-damaged America, Peter Nathaniel Malae brings us the story of a family bound by a shared history of violence, and liberated by the miracle of shared mercy. Written with immense intellect and swagger, Son of Amity imbues the street-level realities of our times — in our cities, towns, prisons, and psyches — with the power of myth." — Jon Raymond, author of Freebird and The Half-Life
"This is a tough, haunting, compelling book—one that deals with our society now, with violence and poverty and identity and the very real consequences of being in the crosshairs of war. What a marvel the language is, too. Every sentence is carefully built. Malae is a powerhouse of a writer." —Pauls Toutonghi, author of Dog, Gone and Evel Knievel Days
"Violent and smart and funny. I am excited by this new writer."
"Peter Nathaniel Malae is the real deal. He's like a young Nelson Algren or Richard Wright, one of those writers who can hit with both hands."
"Malae possesses a prodigious command of the masculine American idiom and its ironies. Paul is that rarest of literary creatures these days: a hard-living, oft-brawling, culturestraddling, foul-mouthed juggernaut, one who's as liable to throw a punch as he is to break your heart."
— Rattawut Lapcharoensap