PETRA explores the redemptive power of love and friendship in an intoxicating story of art and ambition, guilt and forgiveness, travel and empire in the 19th century Middle East. In 1860, Thomas Hudson towers over the New York art world, an artist celebrated for paintings glowing with the power of American nature. By 1868, the death of his children and new tastes in art collecting haunt his studio. Searching for forgiveness and inspiration, he travels to Paris, Alexandria, Beirut, Jerusalem, and the ancient city of Petra to revive his fame with stunning, exotic paintings.In his caravan are a devious American entrepreneur, a sympathetic Oxford don, and a spirited English noblewoman married to a Bedouin sheikh. Hudson’s journey across a vast map of desire, frustration, danger and discovery illuminates both the past and present.