A Line in the Sand

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On a beach in Virginia, a dead body is discovered by a man taking his daily swim – Arman Bajalan, formerly an interpreter in Iraq. After surviving an assassination attempt that killed his wife and child, Arman has been given lonely sanctuary in the US. Now he knows he’s still not safe.

Seasoned detective Catherine Wheel and her partner have little to go on beyond a bus ticket in the man’s pocket. It leads them to Sally Ewell, a local journalist as grief-stricken as Arman by the Iraq war, who is investigating a nefarious corporation: one on the cusp of landing a multi-billion-dollar government defense contract.

As victims mount around Arman, taking the team down wrong turns and towards startling evidence, they find themselves in a race, committed to unraveling the truth and keeping Arman alive — even if it costs them everything.

“A stunning novel…One is reminded of Graham Greene’s or Robert Stone’s work, only set in the 21st century.”
The New York Times

“A deeply compelling story … brilliantly nuanced.”
The Washington Post

“Expertly told … thrilling.”
The Los Angeles Times

“Masterful in its structure and pacing; a great read.”
Kirkus starred review

Praise for A Line in the Sand

“Powers has done it again.A Line in the Sand has it all: a kickass mystery with classic police procedural elements, originally drawn and memorable characters, but, most of all, a story with a huge heart and an underlying message that is sure to resonate widely. Enjoy the latest from a superb storyteller.”
David Baldacci, author of The 6:20 Man

“Sure to rank among the year’s best thrillers, A Line in the Sand is a tense, twisting, and thoughtful story of the intersection between grief and greed — and the human lives crushed in the middle. Kevin Powers writes with uncommon grace, delivering the rare novel that is both propulsive and contemplative, calling to mind writers as varied as Tim O’Brien and Michael Connelly.
—Michael Koryta

“A riveting powerhouse of a book, A Line in the Sand pits two small town cops—and a mysterious Iraqi interpreter whose secrets have already gotten a lot of people killed—against corruption and violence at the highest levels of government. A spellbinding and totally original thriller; Kevin Powers has reinvented himself as novelist yet again.”
—Philipp Meyer