Five Days by Douglas Kennedy
A Novel

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From the critically lauded, internationally bestselling author of The Moment comes a profoundly moving novel that explores how a single brief encounter can change one’s life.

Laura spends her days looking at other people’s potential calamities. She works in the radiography unit of a small hospital on the Maine coast, bearing constant witness to the fears of patient after frightened patient. In a job where finding nothing is always the best possible outcome, she is well versed in the random injustices of life, a truism that has lately been playing out in her marriage as well. Since being downsized, her husband, Dan, has become withdrawn, his emotional distance gradually corroding their relationship. With a son in college and a daughter soon due to leave home, Laura has begun to fear that the marital sounds of silence will only deepen once the nest is truly empty.

When an opportunity arises to attend a weekend medical conference in Boston, Laura jumps at this respite from home. While checking in, she meets a man as gray and uninspired as her drab hotel room. Richard is an outwardly dull, fiftysomething insurance salesman. But during a chance second encounter, Laura discovers him to be surprisingly complex and thoughtful, someone who, like herself, is grappling with the same big questions about decisions made and the human capacity for self-entrapment. As their conversation deepens and begins to veer into shared confessions, the overwhelming sense of personal and intimate connection arises. A transformative love affair begins. But can this potential, much-longed-for happiness be married to their own difficult personal circumstances? Can they upend their lives and embrace that most loaded of words: change?

A love story as clear-sighted and ruminative as it is affecting, Five Days will have you reflecting about the choices we all make that shape our destinies. Crafted with Kennedy’s trademark evocative prose and pitch-perfect in its depiction of the complex realities of modern life, it is a novel that speaks directly to the many contradictions of the human heart.

About Douglas Kennedy

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Douglas Kennedy is the author of ten previous novels, including the international bestseller The Moment. His work has been translated into twenty-two languages, and in 2007 he received the French decoration of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. Find out more at
Published April 30, 2013 by Atria Books. 338 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Five Days

Publishers Weekly

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Laura Warren is a radiographic technician in Maine, trained to spot disease in others, but unable to determine the cause of her own sadness in the bumpy 11th novel from Kennedy (The Moment). Laura’s f

Mar 04 2013 | Read Full Review of Five Days: A Novel

The Independent

Inside the jacket of Douglas Kennedy's latest novel, Five Days, we learn that he "currently divides his time between London, Paris, Berlin, Maine and Montreal".

Apr 06 2013 | Read Full Review of Five Days: A Novel

The Telegraph

This was not a sexy thing to spend money on, she’d be the first to agree, but it was necessary, because it was letting rain in, so although they needed to borrow the money – a $45,000 home-improvement loan – from the bank they felt they had to, because they were preserving the value of t...

Mar 28 2013 | Read Full Review of Five Days: A Novel

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