By Blair Hurley
W.W. Norton & Company, August 7, 2018
“She comes early, wet with rain, and confronts him in the back hall of the Zendo. ‘I need to know some things,’ she says. ‘You better come in,’ he says, and holds open the door. . . .”
Nicole Hennessy’s life revolves around her Zen practice at the Boston Zendo, seeking spiritual solace in the tenets of Buddhism. After a decade of grueling spiritual practice under her master’s tutelage, living on a shoestring as a shop clerk, Nicole has become sexually and emotionally entangled with her mentor. To break free, she must retrace her entire life’s journey―from her strict Irish Catholic upbringing to her drug-fueled year as a teenage runaway. Even as she reinvents herself in New York City, her master’s intoxicating voice pursues her, whispering dangerously in her ear. Somehow, he knows everything.
A hypnotic and daring debut, The Devoted asks what it takes, and what you’ll sacrifice, to find enlightenment.
About the Author
Blair Hurley is a Pushcart Prize winner whose work has appeared in West Branch and Mid-American Review, among other publications. A native of Boston, she now lives in Toronto, where she teaches creative writing at the University of Toronto.