The Guilty One
A little boy was found dead in a children's playground...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?
Deeply psychological and suspenseful, The Guilty One is already an international phenomenon and one of the most talked-about books of the year.
Winner of Richard & Judy Book Club: Summer Read 2012. Shortlisted for Edgar Allan Poe Awards: Best Paperback Original 2014. Long-listed for Theakston's Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2013.
[a] moving, insightful debut ... It's easy to see why this caused such a stir at Frankfurt last year. If it isn't this year's Before I Go To Sleep, I'll eat my laptop The Guardian An absorbing psychological debut Company (Top Pick) It's one of the best debuts I've ever encountered -- Shari Low The Daily Record Lisa Ballantyne has written a first novel that is both moving and suspenseful; richly detailed, yet with the eerie simplicity of a parable Joyce Carol Oates This is an outstanding work of fiction, and the real crime would have been if the talent of Lisa Ballantyne had never been discovered Daily Record Thought provoking, brave and challenging, this book is an unsettling and compulsive read Rosamund Lupton, bestselling author of Sister and Afterwards Gripping stuff More! This is an outstanding work of fiction, and the real crime would have been if the talent of Lisa Ballantyne had never been discovered Daily Record It's a work of genuine substance about real human beings with real human flaws, in which nothing can be tied up neatly because life doesn't work like that. The Guilty One puts her firmly on the list of writers to watch Irish Independant This is as assured debut novel that has 'bestseller' slapped all over it Crimesquad.co.uk Fast-paced and emotionally charged, we were tearing through it well into the night. Keep a tissue handy - you'll be a wreck by the end Emerald Street Gets better as you read it ... a novel that grips ... engrossing the reader who will want to find out what happens Dulwich Book Reviews One of the most readable, emotionally intense novels of the year, and a debut one at that. Lisa Ballantyne pulls off the key writer's trick of getting us to care about the characters; by the end of the first chapter, you will be comprehensively on the hook Richard from Richard and Judy's Book Club, Autumn 2012 Pick Wow! I finished this late yesterday afternoon at the beach...This is a really good legal thriller. I like the way the chapters alternated in time. This doesn't always work, sometimes confusing, but the author Lisa made it happen and did it very well Annie Philbrick, Bank Square Books 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 Ballantyne paints such vivid portraits of her characters that it is impossible not to sympathise with the tolerant and loving Minnie, and this psychological drama will keep you wondering right to the final chapter Townsville Eye A mature, gripping book you'll be desperate to tell your friends about Big Issue (Scotland) On one level, Lisa Ballantyne's The Guilty One delivers riveting courtroom drama that is unflinchingly true to its characters. At another level, its personal story resonates with love, forgiveness and the possibility of redemption. The Guilty One will touch your heart even as it leaves you unsettled Hallie Ephron, author of There Was an Old Woman The Guilty One beautifully blends both past and present in a novel that will keep readers interested RT Book Reviews
Lisa Ballantyne was born in Armadale, West Lothian, Scotland and was educated at Armadale Academy and University of St Andrews. She spent most of her twenties working and living in China, before returning to the UK in 2002, to work in Higher Education. She lives in Glasgow; this is her first novel.