A solid book throughout. A great start gives way to a great middle, which leads to a great ending. A violent act leaves a family emotionally shattered, struggling to find direction and cohesion amidst a haunting desire for justice an vengeance. A young man is abruptly made to handle these complex ideas, giving way to a conclusion which makes you ask the question of whether anything, even perfect justice, can put things back to the way they once were. A very well written book. I certainly wouldn't argue against this winning the National Book Award.