The Fact of a Body
The Gordon Burn Prize
CWA Dagger for Non-Fiction
'Part memoir, part true crime, wholly brilliant.' – Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train.
When law student Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich is asked to work on a death-row hearing for convicted murderer and child molester Ricky Langley, she finds herself thrust into the tangled story of his childhood. As she digs deeper and deeper into the case she realizes that, despite their vastly different circumstances, something in his story is unsettlingly, uncannily familiar.
The Fact of a Body is both an enthralling memoir and a groundbreaking, heart-stopping investigation into how the law is personal, composed of individual stories, and proof that arriving at the truth is more complicated, and powerful, than we could ever imagine.
In the media
A haunting memoir of murder, revenge and dark family secrets
Shocking, chilling, unforgettable
Mail on Sunday
Compulsive, eloquent and profoundly troubling. One of those rare books which embrace the genuine complexity of real life.
Utterly remarkable . . . It isn’t just that the writing can be beautiful (the author has a very nice way with cemeteries, which is just as well because she visits enough of them), it isn’t just her coruscating honesty, it is that she understands how very partial the stories we tell ourselves are.
David Aaronovitch The Times