Shortlisted for the 1989 Booker Prize, The Book of Evidence by John Banville is a dark and unsettling crime classic. This special 25th anniversary edition features extra material.
Frederick Charles St John Vanderveld Montgomery. Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth? Don't make me laugh.
Freddie Montgomery has committed two crimes. He stole a Dutch old-master painting from a wealthy family friend and murdered the chambermaid who caught him in the act. Narcissistic, greedy and reckless, Freddie travels through life apparently without remorse. However, as he narrates his testimony, he realises that the only person to be held responsible for his life, and his crimes, is himself. He just can't quite admit it yet . . .
Shortlisted for the 1989 Booker Prize, John Banville's The Book of Evidence is a wonderfully dark, insightful and unnerving crime novel that takes us deep into the unreliable mind of an improbable murderer.
It's not the dead that seem strange to Quirke. It's the living. One night, after a few drinks at an office party, Quirke shuffles down into the morgue where he works and finds his brother-in-law, Malachy, altering a file he has no business even reading. Odd enough in itself to find Malachy there, but the next morning, when the haze has lifted, it looks an awful lot like his brother-in-law, the esteemed doctor, was in fact tampering with a corpse—and concealing the cause of death.
It turns out the body belonged to a young woman named Christine Falls. And as Quirke reluctantly presses on toward the true facts behind her death, he comes up against some insidious—and very well-guarded—secrets of Dublin's high Catholic society, among them members of his own family.
Set in Dublin and Boston in the 1950s, the first novel in the Quirke series brings all the vividness and psychological insight of Booker Prize winner John Banville's fiction to a thrilling, atmospheric crime story. Quirke is a fascinating and subtly drawn hero, Christine Falls is a classic tale of suspense, and Benjamin Black's debut marks him as a true master of the form.