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The Book of Why
Little, Brown (2013)

"Montemarano is a brilliant illuminator of the outer reaches of hope. You’ll read this stunning novel compulsively, at first in search of answers, then from a deep and painful affection for the human beings you’ll meet in these pages. This is a haunting and extraordinary book."

—Julie Orringer

"Nicholas Montemarano is a brilliant storyteller with a poet’s heart—and The Book of Why is an intricately constructed narrative, part riveting, part reverie, entirely beautiful. I wanted this novel to last forever, and still I could not bear to put it down—kind of like life itself."

—Claudia Emerson

"The Book of Why is a breathtaking show of love and hope, of disappearing acts, of restorative reappearances. It is, in a word, magic."

—Rachel DeWoskin


"Love and death: our two greatest mysteries. Not many writers have the guts or the skill to take them on at the same time, but Nicholas Montemarano has both. With The Book of Why, he’s managed a seemingly impossible feat—using language to delineate, with great compassion and precision, that which appears ineffable."

—Ron Currie, Jr.

"The Book of Why presents a compulsively readable mystery; it is impossible to resist how persuasively Montemarano plays with the metaphysics of love and desire."

—Dana Spiotta

"By turns dark and hopeful, it is a beautiful journey of self-discovery that will inspire readers to question the accepted confines of the world, and leave them pondering the powers of belief."


"A fascinating tale of faith, extraordinarily interesting book."

The Washington Post

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