The Stowaway

After fleeing the misery of post-revolution Romania, nineteen-year-old Daniel Pacepa sneaks aboard a container ship in the Spanish port of Algecirus, never dreaming that the ship’s captain has, in a recent crossing, dealt with stowaways in the most ruthless manner possible. Upon discovering Pacepa, members of the ship’s Filipino crew face a moral dilemma. Do they hand the stowaway over to the officers, or do they attempt to hide him for the duration of the voyage? A dramatization of the one of the most shocking incidents in the history of maritime shipping, The Stowaway exposes the basest, as well as the most self-sacrificing, impulses of the human condition.

Hough displays an impressive grasp of the architecture and machinations of the enormous ship, tangibly immersing the reader in the daily lives of its crew. More impressive still is Hough’s grasp of his characters’ cultural perspectives. The thoughts and actions of both Filipinos and Romanians are inseparable from the cultures in which they live. Hough explores both with complete self-confidence as readers move seamlessly from the desperate, alcohol-soaked mind of a 19-year-old Romanian to the conscience-stricken sobriety of a Filipino whose deeds are dictated by a love of God and dedication to his family…. This is a powerful novel that artfully combines the vivid, breathless pacing of the best adventure stories with the moral and metaphysical depth of the best literary fiction.
The National Post

Nominated for the Dublin Impac Award

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