THE NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER!
'One of the most readable, emotionally intense novels of the year' Richard and Judy
Daniel Hunter has spent years defending lost causes as a solicitor in London. But his life changes when he is introduced to Sebastian, an eleven-year-old accused of murdering an innocent young boy.
As he plunges into the muddy depths of Sebastian's troubled home life, Daniel thinks back to his own childhood in foster care - and to Minnie, the woman whose love saved him, until she, too, betrayed him so badly that he cut her out of his life.
But what crime did Minnie commit that made Daniel disregard her for fifteen years? And will Daniel's identification with a child on trial for murder make him question everything he ever believed in?
A Richard & Judy Book Club favourite and international phenomenon. Deeply psychological and suspenseful, The Guilty One is both a legal thriller and a human story of love and redemption.
'Moving, insightful' Guardian
'A page-turner with real emotional depth' Daily Express
'Thought-provoking, brave, challenging, compulsive' Rosamund Lupton
'An absorbing psychological debut' Company
'Sophisticated, suspenseful, unsettling' Lee Child
'Grips like a vice' Daily Mail
'One of the best debuts I've ever encountered. An outstanding work of fiction' Daily Record
'Will touch your heart, even as it leaves you unsettled' Hallie Ephron
'I couldn't get this book out of my head. It kept me up all night and guessing the whole way through. I loved it' Jenny Colgan
*DON'T MISS LITTLE LIAR, THE DEEPLY COMPULSIVE NEW NOVEL BY LISA BALLANTYNE*
A child-on-child murder drives Ballantyne s searing debut, a psychological legal thriller. Because solicitor Daniel Hunter, an experienced defender of children accused of crimes, was a troubled child himself, he connects with his disturbed client, 11-year-old Sebastian Croll, who s on trial for beating to death eight-year-old Ben Stokes in a London park. Alternating flashbacks of Daniel s youth as a fatherless foster child of a drug-addicted mother given by social workers to eccentric, perceptive, and loving Minnie Flynn demystify Daniel s rejection of Minnie, who both hurt him and saved him from Sebastian s fate or worse. Meanwhile, the truth about Sebastian and his arguably overdrawn dysfunctional family gradually emerges. Drawn with ruthless realism, Ballantyne s sympathetic major characters, especially Daniel and Minnie, leap from her pages into readers hearts. Ballantyne also indicts the British government s stingy refusal to fund genuine rehabilitation of juvenile offenders in this scalding exploration of childhood violence, adult refusal to forgive, and redemptive love.
Customer ReviewsSee All
The Guilty One
Boring all the way except for Daniel’s relationship with Minnie. Court room trial dull. Sebastian would have written a better novel.