An American teen living abroad discovers the truth about himself and his family in this thrilling novel from "one of the best dialogue hounds in the business" (New York Times Book Review).
1972, Beirut, Lebanon. Young American Matthew lives with his father, a rising foreign service attache, and mother, in an exclusive community of ex-patriots. It is the summer Matthew becomes a teenager, falls in love, nearly dies, and watches his family, and the city, fall apart.
It is in this world of Western schemers and local merchants, of hoodlums and politicians, that Matthew begins to solve the mystery of who his father really is, and what role he is really playing in the upheaval that is shaking the city loose of its old, civilized and way and ushering in a new and frightening radicalism.
This is the story of a boy and a family, besieged. Intimate in scope and wrenching in its vision of lost innocence, City on the Edge is a mystery and spy story from the past, and a coming of age story for our time.
In 1973, 12-year-old Graham Sanderson, the narrator of this outstanding thriller from Swinson (the Frank Marr PI series), moves with his family to Beirut, Lebanon, where his father, a Foreign Service officer, is posted to the U.S. embassy. For Graham, it's an opportunity to make two expat friends who will help him explore the delights and occasional risks of a new place and different culture. Observant and inquisitive, Graham soon becomes aware of the underlying sense of danger and imminent violence that hangs over the city, the result of forces he can't understand. When Graham discovers that his father carries a gun and holds clandestine late-night rendezvous with strangers, the boy suspects he may be working for the CIA. Events take a darker turn after Graham secretly witnesses the murder of an Arab by a foreigner, possibly an American involved in illegal gunrunning, at which point he and his friends are forced to make a decision that will end their youthful innocence. Swinson offers the reader a deeply felt coming-of-age novel set against a background of powerful authenticity. This is not to be missed. \n