Hawke’s Point

Jonas Hawke, a recovering alcoholic with bouts of crankiness and sheer orneriness, may be past his prime, but he’s still a damned good lawyer. That’s why everyone in Beacon Junction turns to him for advice as soon as something goes wrong. And plenty does—murder, adultery, corporate conspiracy—everything you’d expect from a small, sleepy Vermont town.

When a mysterious stranger shows up to question Jonas’s handling of a 20-year-old murder trial, Jonas is forced to confront an ethical lapse in his past. And when evidence surfaces that a heart stent made by a local company may be doing more harm than good, he is drawn into an ethical quagmire that will determine how he’ll be remembered.

Hawke’s Point is the story of a broken man who gets a second chance to do the right thing, a novel with a potent mix of complex characters, life-and-death problems to keep them busy, and a page-turning plot.


Every town has its secrets and almost all hold such confidences close to the heart. It takes a determined, resourceful storyteller to bring such tales to the surface and that’s what Mark Willen has done with his new novel set in the star-crossed town of Beacon Junction.

—Tim Wendel, Author of Cancer Crossing, Habana Libre, and Summer of ‘68

As Mark Willen explores life in a small Vermont community, he addresses large themes: guilt, forgiveness, familial loss, love, ethical dilemmas of many kinds. Vivid, complex characters like Jonas Hawke, retired lawyer and repository of many of the community’s secrets, engage the reader and move the narrative along at an energetic pace. This is a novel so rich in humanity and situation that the world of Hawke’s Point will continue to beguile long after the reader has turned the last page

—Margaret Meyers, Author of Dislocation and Swimming in the Congo

An inspiring read, Hawke’s Point was elegantly and tightly written and told a story not just of tense situations, but the people in them. Highly recommended.

—Frances Carden, Reader’s Lane reviews

This turned out to be something pretty rare: a thoughtful and thought-provoking literary novel with a genuinely interesting and suspenseful plot.

—Noah Weiss on Goodreads

Willen develops the story gradually, complete with twists (and a couple of knots) and ethical questions. Along the journey, he introduces each character as though he or she is a neighbor or co-worker. The main character, Jonas, is a wonderful combination of intelligence, sadness, trustworthiness, loyalty, and regret. He leads the reader through a set of circumstances that demands confronting the past while charging into the future.

—KC Smith on Goodreads

Mark Willen