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Penance

Eliza Clark

An utterly chilling, compulsive story of a murder among teenagers, on the eve of the historic Brexit vote, by a major new voice in British fiction.

Format
Audio book
ISBN
9780571371808
Date Published
04.07.2023
Delivery
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Summary

A GRANTA BEST OF YOUNG BRITISH NOVELIST 2023

‘One of the summer’s most talked-about books.’ SUNDAY TIMES

‘An unmissable banger that you need to preorder immediately.’ ALICE SLATER
‘You’ve never read anything like this.’ JULIA ARMFIELD

Do you know what happened already?
Did you know her? Did you see it on the internet? Did you listen to a podcast? Did the hosts make jokes?

Did you see the pictures of the body?

Did you look for them?

It’s been years since the horrifying murder of sixteen-year-old Joan Wilson rocked Crow-on-Sea, and the events of that terrible night are now being published for the first time.

That story is Penance, a dizzying feat of masterful storytelling, where Eliza Clark manoeuvres us through accounts from the inhabitants of this small seaside town. Placing us in the capable hands of journalist Alec. Z. Carelli, Clark allows him to construct what he claims is the ‘definitive account’ of the murder – and what led up to it. Built on hours of interviews with witnesses and family members, painstaking historical research, and most notably, correspondence with the killers themselves, the result is a riveting snapshot of lives rocked by tragedy, and a town left in turmoil.

The only question is: how much of it is true?

Critic Reviews

Eliza Clark is a genius with voice and a master of flipped expectations. Penance astonished me with its breadth, wit and confidence. A wickedly clever deep dive into the nastier corners of the national psyche - you've never read anything like this.

Julia Armfield
ElizaClark

Eliza Clark is the author of Boy Parts (2020) and Penance (2023). In 2020, Boy Parts was Blackwell’s Fiction book of the year, and in 2022 Eliza was chosen as a finalist for the Women’s Prize Futures Award for writers under thirty-five. In 2023, she was named one of Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists. She also writes for film…

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ElizaClark
Portrait of writer Eliza Clark