By Ann Patchett
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Somewhere in South America, at the home of the country’s vice president, a lavish birthday party is being held in honor of a powerful Japanese businessman. A famous American opera diva entertains the international guests. It is a night out of a fairytale — until a band of gun-wielding terrorists breaks in through the air-conditioning vents and takes the entire party hostage.
But what begins as a panicked, life-threatening scenario turns into something quite different, as terrorists and hostages forge unexpected bonds, people from different countries and continents become compatriots, and passionate, ill-fated love blooms upon this unlikely soil.