Next by James Hynes
A Novel

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One Man, one day, and a novel bursting with drama, comedy, and humanity.
Kevin Quinn is a standard-variety American male: middle-aged, liberal-leaning, self-centered, emotionally damaged, generally determined to avoid both pain and responsibility. As his relationship with his girlfriend approaches a turning point, and his career seems increasingly pointless, he decides to secretly fly to a job interview in Austin, Texas. Aboard the plane, Kevin is simultaneously attracted to the young woman in the seat next to him and panicked by a new wave of terrorism in Europe and the UK. He lands safely with neuroses intact and full of hope that the job, the expansive city, and the girl from the plane might yet be his chance for reinvention. His next eight hours make up this novel, a tour-de-force of mordant humor, brilliant observation, and page-turning storytelling.


About James Hynes

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James Hynes is the author of the novels The Lecturer's Tale, Wild Colonial Boy, the stories Publish & Perish (all New York Times Notable Books of the Year), and the novel Kings of Infinite Space. He lives in Austin, Texas.
Published February 17, 2010 by Reagan Arthur Books. 330 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Next

The New York Times

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And later still (real events have rendered some of this book even more rattling than it was when written), after Kevin spots two small aircraft overhead: “Is it wise these days to let either plane fly so close to a city skyline?” Kevin thinks: “Am I the only one who worries about stuff like this?

Mar 10 2010 | Read Full Review of Next: A Novel

The New York Times

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They’ve taken everything that was both special and obnoxious about the Ann Arbor Kevin used to love — the food, the politics and the attitude — and they’ve packaged it, art-directed it and marketed it to Kevin at three times the price he used to pay at the Packard Food Co-op.

Apr 01 2010 | Read Full Review of Next: A Novel

The Washington Post

In the very first sentence of this new novel, Kevin Quinn works himself into a panic by imagining a Stinger missile hitting his plane as he lands in Austin.

Mar 24 2010 | Read Full Review of Next: A Novel

That's when the clueless Kevin finally makes it to his job interview on the 52nd floor of an Austin high-rise, after several hours of minor indignities and complications them have left him pondering, in vague erotic reveries, the loves and regrets of his life so far.

Apr 25 2010 | Read Full Review of Next: A Novel

MostlyFiction Book Reviews

” A few weeks ago on NPR, there was a discussion: “What Does it Take For You to Give up on a Book?” Reading the novel Next reminds me of that discussion because while most of the novel is good, it is the last 50 or so pages that is especially gripping reading.

Jul 03 2010 | Read Full Review of Next: A Novel

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