Jaskunas, Paul 1971-

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Jaskunas, Paul 1971-

PERSONAL: Born October 6, 1971, in San Antonio, TX; married; wife's name Solveiga. Education: Oberlin College, 1994; Cornell University, M.F.A., 2000.

ADDRESSES: Home—Arlington, VA. Agent—c/o Author Mail, Free Press, Simon & Schuster, 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020.

CAREER: Novelist and editor. Former journalist; public relations consultant; freelance writer. American Lawyer, New York, NY, reporter; has lectured at Cornell University.

AWARDS, HONORS: Fulbright fellowship; grant from Constance Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts.


Hidden (novel), Free Press (New York, NY), 2004.

Editor of Epoch (literary journal). Contributor to periodicals, including Chicago Tribune, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and Commonweal.

WORK IN PROGRESS: Providential Life, a novel.

SIDELIGHTS: A former journalist and Fulbright fellow, Paul Jaskunas is the author of the critically acclaimed 2004 novel Hidden, in which he examines issues of personal responsibility, domestic abuse, and memory. The novel had its basis in a real-life incident, as Jaskunas told Bill O'Sullivan in a Washingtonian Online interview. "The key catalyst was a newspaper article I read about one of these many DNA cases in which a convict is released after someone else is convicted of a crime," Jaskunas remarked. "Only in that bit of news, there was a woman who still believed she had it right, that the man being freed was the guilty party."

In Hidden a young woman, Maggie Wilson, is attacked and severely beaten in her Indiana farmhouse; her abusive husband is sentenced to prison on the strength of her testimony. Six years later another man confesses to the crime, and Maggie "is thrown into a lonely spiral of self-doubt and confusion," according to a critic in Publishers Weekly. Booklist critic Keir Graff called the work "stylistically assured and emotionally probing" and praised Jaskunas's decision to avoid a sentimental ending. Hidden "is the story of a violent crime," observed Washington Post Book World reviewer Carrie Brown, "but it is also about ordinary transgressions of ordinary people, the small crimes that ripple outward in a life like the concentric rings of a pebble thrown into still water. Truth, Maggie discovers, resides in murky territory."



Booklist, June 1, 2004, Keir Graff, review of Hidden, p. 1701.

Kirkus Reviews, June 1, 2004, review of Hidden, p. 510.

Publishers Weekly, July 12, 2004, review of Hidden, p. 45.

Washington Post Book World, Carrie Brown, August 8, 2004, "Head Games," review of Hidden, p. T6.


Barnes & Noble Web site, http://www.barnesandnoble.com/ (fall, 2004), interview with Jaskunas.

Washingtonian Online, http://www.washingtonian.com/ (July 16, 2004), Bill O'Sullivan, interview with Jaskunas.

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