Penance

Penance

Fiction & Poetry, Modern & Contemporary Fiction
Hardback Published on: 06/07/2023
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Bookseller Reviews

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Penance
PENANCE
Eliza Clark deserves 6 stars. Thank you to Faber for the ARC. I cannot wait for the release of this book in July so everyone gets to read it! If you enjoy... READ MORE
Lauren
Penance
Do you know what happened already? Did you know her?
Penance deserves to be one of the standout novels of 2023. This is a work of fiction dressed as a true crime history of the shocking murder of a schoolgirl... READ MORE
Red
Penance
PENANCE
Hell is a state school in a small town in the North East of England. Hell is an abandoned theme park. Hell is posting on tumblr.com at three in the morning... READ MORE
Ellen at Hexham
Penance
I loved it, a fantsatic analysis of society's obsession with true crime
I haven't stopped thinking about Penance since I finished reading it. It's such a clever novel that I devoured mostly in one sitting, it really blurs the l... READ MORE
Amoy Daley, Waterstones Leamington Spa
Penance
Best new author in Britain
Eliza Clark is the best new author in the UK. You can disagree if you like but you'll be wrong. I suspected as much when I read Boy Parts and it's been con... READ MORE
Kevin Render
Penance
Horrifyingly propulsive.
Fantastic. Seamlessly blends narrative storytelling with interviews and text dialogue to create a truly horrific tale. Maintains Clark’s writing style foll... READ MORE
Frankie Bishop
Penance
PENANCE
This! book! Is! So! GOOD! I was lucky enough to get my hands on a proof, and I’m overjoyed that I did. I can’t wait for everyone to read it. Eliza Clark i... READ MORE
Olivia Wright
Penance
Compelling but a little too slow paced
I’ve been sitting with this one for a while and I’m still not entirely sure what to think about it. I loved Eliza Clark’s debut Boy Parts, and I am one of ... READ MORE
Olivia
Penance
Darkly Nostalgic
This was an incredibly nostalgic read for me, as it follows the lives of teenage girls in a horrible seaside Yorkshire town during the 2010s. It got to a p... READ MORE
Ella at Wakefield
Penance
"All that is left is the ghostly echo...."
I am a HUGE fan of Clark's debut, Boy Parts, so I was incredibly excited to read this new book. Think Mean Girls meets Heathers meets The Craft, and add ... READ MORE
Hebe at Fareham
Penance
Outstanding
Eliza Clark's 'Penance' is a breathtaking account of a fictional murder through the lens of (the unlikeable) Alec Z. Corelli. This novel had me gasping... READ MORE
Hannah Torres
Penance
Ethical True Crime
Probably the best book to come out of 2023. ‘Penance’ is written from the perspective of a failed tabloid journalist who, in an effort to revive his lite... READ MORE
Noemie Boulle
Penance
The epitome of unreliable narration...
'Penance' is brilliant. The book slowly unravels the night of a murder in a small Northern seaside town told via a build up of interviews, true crime podca... READ MORE
Gemma Dudley

Synopsis

Structurally inventive and compellingly told, Penance holds a mirror up to the morbid curiosity we have for real-life tragedies and an exploration of gender, violence and adolescence—a landmark new novel from a key voice of our literary present and future.

Shortlisted for Foyles Fiction Book of the Year 2023

Synopsis

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 nearly a decade 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?

  • Publisher: Faber & Faber
  • ISBN: 9780571371761
  • Number of pages: 448
  • Weight: 554g
  • Dimensions: 216 x 135 x 32 mm

Customer Reviews

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Penance
A compulsive and unsettling examination of the morality of true-crime.
Although Clark’s second novel ‘Penance’ takes quite a different approach to her first one (don’t go into this expecting Boy Parts 2.0), her debut gives eno... READ MORE
leah / @lbhreads
Penance
Loved just as much as her debut
I loved the author’s debut Boy Parts, and this one disturbed and entertained me just as much. Read it if: you’re interested in the dynamic around teenag... READ MORE
Ella Tansley
Penance
Engaging and thought provoking
The premise is simple, adolescence girls murder a peer. However the approach of Clark lifts this well written and completely accessible novel into someth... READ MORE
Ryan Bainbridge
Penance
This is how you do issue fiction
This was soooo meta like, this is how you do issue fiction! The double (unreliable) narration, chronic online-ness, teen female friendship, fandom obsessio... READ MORE
Roz
Penance
Masterful
Challenging the ethical ambiguities surrounding the production of true crime books and podcasts (and the questionable playing with truth in the search of a... READ MORE
Christopher Deeks
Penance
Brilliantly portrayed characters
A really well-told mystery in the vein of Matt Wesolowski’s Six Stories series. Clark paints adolescents with empathy and understanding. She also capture... READ MORE
vpeanuts