Summary

"In her gripping new novel, Susan Choi mines the psychology and life of an innocent man suspected of a terrorist's crimes. A thrilling and emotionally profound tour de force from a Pulitzer Prize finalist, a person of interest grapples with the undermining power of suspicion and the toll of regret." "Professor Lee, an Asian-born mathematician nearing retirement age, would seem the last person likely to attract the attention of FBI agents. Yet after a popular young colleague becomes the latest victim of a technology-hating psychopath nicknamed the Brain Bomber, Lee's detached response and persistent socially maladroit behavior lead the FBI, the national news media, and even his own neighbors to regard him with damning suspicion." "Amid campus-wide grief over the murder, Lee receives a cryptic letter from a figure out of his past and becomes certain an old nemesis is now seeking revenge. The letter unearths a lifetime of Lee's shortcomings - toward his dead wife, his estranged only daughter, and a long-denied son. Caught between his guilty recollections and the merciless scrutiny of the murder investigation, determined to face his tormentor and exonerate himself, Lee sets off on a journey that will bring him face-to-face with his past, and that might even provide him a slender but real chance for redemption."--BOOK JACKET.


From an acclaimed novelist, an emotionally complex and riveting story of suspicion, innocence, and regret

When a mail bomb explodes in the campus office next door, Lee, an Asian American math professor at a second-tier university in the Midwest, comes under suspicion. The authorities believe he may be the infamous “brain bomber,” an elusive terrorist whose primary targets are prominent scientists and mathematicians.

In the midst of campus tumult and grief over the star computer scientist who was killed by the bomb, Lee receives a disturbing letter from a figure in his past. Certain he is being targeted for revenge, he begins confronting key events in his life. Misunderstood by the people around him, Lee is not conscious that his behavior has begun to heighten suspicion in the minds of his colleagues, students, and neighbors, leading the FBI to designate him “a person of interest” and pushing his life and reputation to the verge of ruin.

Intricately plotted and engrossing, A Person of Interestasks how far one man can run from his past, and explores the impact of scrutiny and suspicion in an age of terror. With its propulsive drive and vividly realized characters, Susan Choi’s latest novel is as thrilling as it is lyrical, and confirms her place as one of the most important young novelists chronicling the American experience.