About this item

A singularly compelling debut novel, about a desert where people go to escape their past, and a truck driver who finds himself at risk when he falls in love with a mysterious woman.

Ben Jones lives a quiet, hardscrabble life, working as a trucker on Route 117, a little-travelled road in a remote region of the Utah desert which serves as a haven for fugitives and others looking to hide from the world. For many of the desert's inhabitants, Ben's visits are their only contact with the outside world, and the only landmark worth noting is a once-famous roadside diner that hasn't opened in years.

Ben's routine is turned upside down when he stumbles across a beautiful woman named Claire playing a cello in an abandoned housing development. He can tell that she's fleeing something in her past - a dark secret that pushed her to the end of the earth - but despite his better judgment he is inexorably drawn to her.

As Ben and Claire fall in love, specters from her past begin to resurface, with serious and life-threatening consequences not only for them both, but for others who have made this desert their sanctuary. Dangerous men come looking for her, and as they turn Route 117 upside down in their search, the long-buried secrets of those who've laid claim to this desert come to light, bringing Ben and the other locals into deadly conflict with Claire's pursuers. Ultimately, the answers they all seek are connected to the desert's greatest mystery - what really happened all those years ago at the never-open desert diner?

In this unforgettable story of love and loss, Ben learns the enduring truth that some violent crimes renew themselves across generations. At turns funny, heartbreaking and thrilling, The Never-Open Desert Diner powerfully evokes an unforgettable setting and introduces readers to a cast of characters who will linger long after the last page.



About the Author

James Anderson

James Anderson (1936–2007) was a British author. He is best known for his books featuring Inspector Wilkins. Set in the 1930s, the books are set in a large fictional British estate, or stately home of George Henry Aylvin Saunders, the 12th Earl of Burford. The books are a humorous look at the Golden Age type of mystery, which feature whodunnits set during a house party, and contain joking references to Inspector Appleby, the detective created by Michael Innes, or Inspector Alleyn, created by Ngaio Marsh, and to the well-known private detective Hercule Poirot, invented by Agatha Christie. Anderson also wrote novelizations based on the television series, Murder, She Wrote.



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