For as long as she can remember, Susan Dunn has been trying to escape. But peace and happiness have always eluded her--now an adjunct professor, she is tortured by the novel she cannot finish, and a lack of feeling toward a husband who loves her. Just when she's ready to abandon everything to try again, she receives a letter that forces her to reckon with the trauma that first sent her running: her mother's murder at the hands of her father, Daniel Ahearn, forty years ago.
Daniel, out of prison and living a spartan life, has written Susan with his dying wish: to see her for the first time since a policeman tore her from his arms. But does she want to see him, and confront the reason he's been gone so long? What could Daniel possibly offer the daughter he robbed of a family? As the story moves toward a possible reunion, it pulses with emotion, probing the limits of our capacity to forgive. Like Dubus's award-winning Townie and House of Sand and Fog, Gone So Long is a profound exploration of the struggle between our best intentions and most mercurial desires.