John Banville’s stunning powers of mimicry are brilliantly on display in this engrossing novel, the darkly compelling confession of an improbable murderer.
Freddie Montgomery is a highly cultured man, a husband and father living the life of a dissolute exile on a Mediterranean island. When a debt comes due and his wife and child are held as collateral, he returns to Ireland to secure funds. That pursuit leads to murder. And here is his attempt to present evidence, not of his innocence, but of his life, of the events that lead to the murder he committed because he could. Like a hero out of Nabokov or Camus, Montgomery is a chillingly articulate, self-aware, and amoral being, whose humanity is painfully on display.
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“Here is an astonishing, disturbing little novel that might have been coughed up from hell.”–The New York Times Book Review
“Ireland’s finest contemporary novelist.”–The Economist
“The Book of Evidence is a major new work of fiction in which every suave moment calmly detonates to show the murderous gleam within.”–Don DeLillo