The Mystery Writer: A Novel (Paperback)

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The Mystery Writer: A Novel By Sulari Gentill Cover Image
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Staff Reviews

Gentill has done it again, cleverly planting covert details throughout this fast-paced novel featuring an entourage of characters including Theo, aspiring Aussie author, her lawyer brother Gus, and his friend Mac P.I. Plan to indulge yourself with conspiracy theorists, missing manuscripts or manifestos, chance meetings… or not, a dubious literary agency, and a dog named Horse! And let’s not forget a few murders. The Mystery Writer deserves the prize for the most compelling opening sentence!


— From Mindy's Recs


"A mischievous twist on mystery novels and the people who write them." — Benjamin Stevenson, author of Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone and Everyone on the Train is a Suspect

There's nothing easier to dismiss than a conspiracy theory—until it turns out to be true

From 2023 Edgar Award nominee and bestselling author Sulari Gentill comes a literary thriller about an aspiring writer who meets and falls in love with her literary idol—only to find him murdered the day after she gave him her manuscript to read. 

When Theodosia Benton abandons her career path as an attorney and shows up on her brother's doorstep with two suitcases and an unfinished novel, she expects to face a few challenges. Will her brother support her ambition or send her back to finish her degree? What will her parents say when they learn of her decision? Does she even have what it takes to be a successful writer?

What Theo never expects is to be drawn into a hidden literary world in which identity is something that can be lost and remade for the sake of an audience. When her mentor, a highly successful author, is brutally murdered, Theo wants the killer to be found and justice to be served. Then the police begin looking at her brother, Gus, as their prime suspect, and Theo does the unthinkable in order to protect him. But the writer has left a trail, a thread out of the labyrinth in the form of a story. Gus finds that thread and follows it, and in his attempt to save his sister he inadvertently threatens the foundations of the labyrinth itself. To protect the carefully constructed narrative, Theo Benton, and everyone looking for her, will have to die. 

About the Author

After setting out to study astrophysics, graduating in law and then abandoning her legal career to write books, SULARI GENTILL now grows French black truffles on her farm in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains of Australia.

Gentill’s Rowland Sinclair mysteries have won and/or been shortlisted for the Davitt Award and the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, and her stand-alone metafiction thriller, After She Wrote Him won the Ned Kelly Award for Best Crime Novel in 2018. Her tenth Sinclair novel, A Testament of Character, was shortlisted for the Ned Kelly Best Crime Novel in 2021.

Praise For…

BookPage Most Anticipate Mystery & Suspense of 2024 Selection

BookBub Best Mysteries and Thrillers of 2024

Deadly Pleasures 2024 Most Anticipated Mysteries

Novel Suspects Most Anticipated Crime Fiction Novels of 2024

"Gentill nimbly balances the plausible with the outlandish in this sly thriller set in the publishing world...Every time readers think they’ve got the plot pegged, Gentill swerves in a shocking new direction. Certain late-stage reveals, which might ruin the fun in less capable hands, only serve to enhance the novel’s biting wit. This is a winner." — Publishers Weekly

"Gentill’s worthwhile novel is full of compelling characters, including doomsday preppers, online conspiracy theorists, and overzealous publishing agents. Recommended for readers who enjoy mysteries from Riley Sager, Ruth Ware, or Louise Penny." — Library Journal

"Fans will rejoice that Gentill maintains her record of packing stand-alone novels with devilish twists on genre conventions...A fizzy whodunit with pace, panache, and surprises galore." Kirkus Reviews

"Gentill's latest, after The Woman in the Library (2022), slowly unravels as a traditional mystery, but then evolves into a self-aware, Grisham-esque thriller. Readers will root for Theo, then for Gus, to find the answers they need to find closure. With likable side characters (including a dog named Horse) and a truly unexpected third act, The Mystery Writer is sure to please literary crime fans." — Booklist

"Impossible to put down…A good mystery has multiple twists and turns, leading the reader through a maze of clues and red herrings and foreshadowing until the truth is uncovered. To say that Sulari Gentill follows this path would be an understatement of huge proportions. Just when the reader thinks they know who the real murderer is, Gentill throws in a sharp turn and we start all over again. And don’t be surprised if January 6, 2021, doesn’t make a brief appearance! Gentill fans will find this read beyond entertaining and will anxiously await her next story." — New York Journal of Books

"A mischievous twist on mystery novels and the people who write them." — Benjamin Stevenson, author of Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone and Trust Me When I Lie

"Some mysteries need a crime writer to solve. Clever, twisty, and surprisingly unexpected." — Michael Robotham, two-time winner of the CWA Gold Dagger Award

"Stunningly original and thoroughly captivating, Sulari Gentill’s The Mystery Writer perfectly captures the pulse of our time. Do not miss it!" — Andrew Child, bestselling author of the Jack Reacher series
Product Details
ISBN: 9781728285184
ISBN-10: 1728285186
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press
Publication Date: March 19th, 2024
Pages: 400
Language: English