When Ben and Juliette’s young daughter dies in a tragic accident on a school trip, they begin searching for answers. But will they ever know the truth? What was the role of the teacher on the trip – and are the rumours about his past true? As Ben and Juliette search for the truth and the pressure rises, their own secrets and motivations are revealed….
An Honest Deceit is an intelligent and gripping contemporary psychological thriller that questions not just the motives of others, but the real reasons for discovering the truth.
With An Honest Deceit, Guy Mankowski has invented a new sub-genre in crime fiction. This novel would satisfy even the most discerning reader. I was hooked. I loved it.
Ruth Dugdall, bestselling author of The Sacrificial Man and Nowhere Girl
A mesmerising observation of speaking truth to power. Reminded me of Murakami. Mankowski writes characters that are painfully human and fallible. I finished it in one night.
Hanna Jameson, author of Something You Are and Girl Seven
Guy Mankowski is a great writer. Great in the sense that he is unafraid to tackle a multiplicity of themes, genres and characters. I have read all of his novels and a lot of his short stories and I am consistently entranced with his ability (and a bit jealous that he’s so damn good) – his prose style is lyrical, direct and carefully allows the reader into the story at a pace which makes you want to keep turning the pages, not an easy thing to do at all. An Honest Deceit is yet another tangent from Mankowski. The characters and story are not what I expected, I WANT to tell you what happens – I WANT to reveal details. I loved this book so much I asked my wife to read it and am still asking her each day how far she’s got! The intimacy in the dialogue, the moments that make you stop and read a particular sentence again create an experience you feel you are a part of. I really want to talk to someone about this book – like dissecting a film scene by scene. This is Mankowski’s best novel yet. A book of emotional intelligence. A courageous leap forward in characterisation. A book that confirms what I’ve known for ages. He is one of the best young writers in the UK.
Daniel Gothard, bestselling author of Simon says
Author: Guy Mankowski
Guy Mankowski was born on the Isle of Wight and educated at St. Johns College Southsea, commuting to school every day by hovercraft. He then was educated by monks at Ampleforth College, Yorkshire. He trained as a psychologist, working in a hospital by day and as singer of a signed band, Alba Nova, by night. His first novel, ‘The Intimates’ was a Must Read title for New Writing North’s 2011 Read Regional campaign. His second book, Letters from Yelena, won an Arts Council grant, allowing him to research it in the world of Russian ballet. It was adapted for the stage and an excerpt of it was used in GCSE training material by Osiris Educational. His third novel, How I Left The National Grid, was published in the UK, US and Canada. Facsimile’s of the notebook’s he used to develop it were featured in a 2016 textbook by the National Association of Writers in Education. In 2015, along with co-writer Gregory Fox, he won a Northern Film & Media development grant for a comedy script, ‘Antennae: Manchester’s Darkest Band’. He currently lectures in Creative Writing at York University, and holds a PhD in Creative Writing.
LINKS AND REVIEWS
An Honest Deceit
Forthcoming event at Books on the Tyne–
The Huffington Post
‘A book of outstanding quality. The beauty of this book resides in his actuality, and in the way the author eases the reader into it by choosing to tell the story directly from Ben’s perspective. I was increasingly intrigued by the sharp descriptions of the characters that after a few pages take up a life of their own.
With this book I can genuinely say that Guy made me laugh, he made me cry some tears (you can trust me on this. The death of Marine is truly painful and unexpected); he made me feel outraged for the injustice that his protagonist is subject to. Once I started reading, I could not stop. I wanted to know more. If I have a criticism to make is that I wish the book were longer. I would have loved to be able to indulge in Ben’s life for a few more pages.’
Reflections of a reader blog
‘This book is spectacular. It burns away with a quiet fury, that doesn’t die down until the final page turns. Clever, creative, complex and unforgettable it gets under your skin and itches away. Guy Mankowski is a very talented writer, who has a real skill for the portrayal of the best and worst traits of humanity. I, for one will definitely be reading his previous novels.
TV interview (North East Arts and Culture show)-
How I Left The National Grid
New York Journal of Books–
‘This book is the epitome of cool. A cross between Twenty Four Hour Party people and Tom Perrotta’s The Leftovers, written by Julian Barnes. It contains a narrative as spiky as a punk set, a whole symphony of ideas composed by Mankowski within a few subtle bars of text. A brilliantly written literary treat.’
AJ Kirby, reviewer for The New York Journal of Books’
The Huffington Post–
It’s fair to say that anyone who remembers Melody Maker Magazine or attended indie nights in basement clubs strewn with snakebite, will fall in love with this book immediately; however, Mankowski’s narrative also functions as a stand-alone thriller – evoking a sense of mystery – and therefore, those of us who have ever marvelled at ‘The Secret History’ or ‘A Passage to India’, are sure to find it equally enthralling.
Extensive interview in Narc Magazine–
Review of reading at book launch–
‘Few readings have possessed such a powerful, quietly passionate quality. After the noise and raucousness of the rest of the evening, as Mankowski preceded to read his work – the product of three years of research – the hush that fell over the crowd was the sort you rarely get in such large gatherings of people.’
review in Louder than War–
Glasgow review of books review–
‘A clever conceit and a compelling narrative.’
Edward Stourton, BBC Radio 4
‘An intoxicating story of a dinner party between old friends set in a glamorous, affluent world that seems to be decaying from within. Rich with thoughtful, self-analyzing dialogue, The Intimates is crying out for dramatization.’
`The Intimates manages that all too rare feat of being a deeply psychological character study whilst at the same time playing out as a bonafide page-turner. Excellently paced, insightfully created, and with moments of genuine genius, The Intimates is an opulently written, high concept piece which explores the psychology of human relationships. Mankowski has a timeless style- highly polished and brilliantly evocative.’ A.J. Kirby reviewer for The New York Journal of Books
The Northern Echo – http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/features/leader/8971163.The_write_stuff/
Letters from Yelena
‘Unfolding through the letters between a Ukrainian dancer and her lover, the novel explores art and how people use it in their lives to complex and compelling effect.’
New Books Magazine–
‘a truly wonderful epistolary novel. I found this beautifully written novel a joy to read, and within its 245 pages, there are many issues that Reading Groups would find worthy of discussion.’
Extensive interview in The Journal newspaper-
‘A beautifully written story with convincing characters and a good if sometimes heart-breaking plot. Overall, a great novel from Mankowski’
Letters from Yelena’ is a fantastic literary achievement,
The New York Journal Of Books
About the use of ‘Letters from Yelena’ in GCSE training material
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