story begins with an Opera Diva, a song, a powerful captain of industry from
Japan, and a birthday party. The night goes horribly wrong when terrorists
burst into the room. Roxanne Coss, the famous Opera Diva, enchants both captive and captor.
Relationships are formed along tenuous lines, time stands still for a brief
magical little while. Patchett has written a brilliant story that
delves into the changing relationship of captors and captives with compassion
and insight. Her writing is absolutely luminous. This is one of my favorite books.
Somewhere in South America, at the home of the country's vice president, a lavish birthday party is being held in honor of Mr. Hosokawa, a powerful Japanese businessman. Roxanne Coss, opera's most revered soprano, has mesmerized the international guests with her singing. It is a perfect evening -- until a band of gun-wielding terrorists breaks in through the air-conditioning vents and takes the entire party hostage. But what begins as a panicked, life-threatening scenario slowly evolves into something quite different, as terrorists and hostages forge unexpected bonds and people from different countries and continents become compatriots.Friendship, compassion, and the chance for great love lead the characters to forget the real danger that has been set in motion and cannot be stopped.