William Hastings is the author of The Hard Way, and the editor of Stray Dogs: Writing from the Other America. He lives in Pennsylvania and works as a farmhand and bookseller.

The Howling Ages

By William Hastings

When a well-intentioned, adventurous young American travels to Kuwait to teach, he brings high hopes with him. Thomas wants to make money, escape his complicated family responsibilities, and break the haunting silence at the core of his life. Instead, he experiences the dark side of humanity—where the banality of evil overcomes the power of love. 

The desert is endless and beautiful. The people are welcoming. But the Kuwait of The Howling Ages is awash with racism, discrimination, sex trafficking, and the damage—cultural, financial, psychic—of the Gulf War. In this compressed, intense tale of a stranger in a strange land, William Hastings creates a beautiful but fallen world that resonates with Graham Greene’s Vietnam and Joseph Conrad’s Congo.