Unravelling Oliver, Paperback
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


WINNER - IBA Crime Fiction Book of the Year 2014 'Truly excellent, beautifully written ...strongly recommended' Sophie Hannah 'Compelling, clever and dark, unlike any other psychological thriller you will have read before ...you'll gobble it up in one go.' Heat Magazine 'Incredibly brilliant' Marian Keyes 'Gone Girl meets The Spinning Heart ...a great cracking read ...I couldn't put it down' Ryan Tubridy, RTE 'The compulsion to continue reading never wanes and most impressively the ending doesn't buckle under the weight of expectation ...a persistently satisfying read' Sunday Times 'A page-turning, one-sitting read from a brand new master of psychological suspense' Sunday Independent 'An ambitiously structured and compelling "whydunnit"' Daily Mail 'Formidable' Irish Times 'Reminiscent of The Book of Evidence' RTE Guide 'We read this in one sitting ...satisfyingly unnerving.' Woman's Way 'All I know is I stayed awake until 3am to finish it, which I haven't done with a new novel for longer than I can remember.' Irish Independent 'The best opening line you'll read all year ...and you'll keep reading' Sinead Crowley, RTE Arts Correspondent 'Her writing is stylish, the characters are vivid and the line of the story is all too real and plausible. Can't recommend it highly enough.' Rick O'Shea, 2FM 'A superb and compelling terrifying book' Sinead Desmond, TV3 'Just read a book in one sitting.

Last time I managed that was about twenty years ago.

The book was Liz Nugent's Unravelling Oliver' Declan Burke, CrimeAlwaysPays.ie 'A kind of Irish Mr Ripley ...Gripping, thought-provoking' Darragh McManus, arts journalist 'I read this book over a 24 hour period.

I seriously could not put it down.' Writing.ie 'Magnificent ...compulsively readable ...stunning, shock and superb' Frank McGuinness 'I expected more of a reaction the first time I hit her.' Liz Nugent's gripping novel of psychological suspense, Unravelling Oliver, is a complex and elegant study of the making of a sociopath in the tradition of Barbara Vine and Patricia Highsmith. Oliver Ryan is a handsome and charismatic success story.

He lives in the suburbs with his wife, Alice, who illustrates his award-winning children's books and gives him her unstinting devotion.

Their life together is one of enviable privilege and ease - enviable until, one evening after supper, Oliver attacks Alice and beats her into a coma. In the aftermath, as everyone tries to make sense of his astonishing act of savagery, Oliver tells his story.

So do those whose paths he has crossed over five decades.

What unfolds is a story of shame, envy, breath-taking deception and masterful manipulation. Only Oliver knows the lengths to which he has had to go to get the life to which he felt entitled.

But even he is in for a shock when the past catches up with him. Liz Nugent has worked in Irish film, theatre and television for most of her adult life.

She is an award-winning writer of radio and television drama and has written short stories for children and adults.

Unravelling Oliver is her first novel.




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Oliver Ryan is an author who one day, out of the blue, beats his wife, Alice, into a coma. The book is told from different viewpoints, including Oliver's, as we unravel what led up to what seemed like a very unexpected attack. This is a really cleverly plotted book, as it all unfolds gradually, leading up to a moment of realisation when it becomes clear why Oliver has reacted the way he has. It took a little getting into as I got used to each voice but it didn't take too long before I was engrossed in what is quite a short read. A very good psychological story and I hope Liz Nugent writes more of the same.

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