The Guilty One by Lisa Ballantyne

The Guilty One

Lisa Ballantyne

If you are certain of your views on punishment for children who kill (or may have killed) and on which adults are fit to care for any children, then this book is not for you. If you value a concerned but never sentimental story - give this a try. The concentration needed to cope with the constant time shifts between solicitor Daniel's experiences as a child and his defence of 10-year-old Sebastian, is well worth the effort.

Extract

He thought about the coming trial and the press stories which would only worsen. Sebastian - unnamed and faceless - was intrinsically evil, according to the papers. Not only was the boy deemed guilty but intrinsically evil. The press did not presume innocence.
Sebastian's actual innocence concerned Daniel less than the boy's survival.

Parallels
  • Speak No Evil by Martyn Waites
  • The Child Who by Simon Lelic
  • After the Fall by Charity Norman

Books with similar mood

The Synapse Sequence

Daniel Godfrey

The Meaning of Night

Michael Cox

A Summer of Murder

Oliver Bottini

Sorry

Zoran Drvenkar

The Vorrh

Brian Catling

The History of Bees

Maja Lunde

The Woman from Bratislava

Leif Davidsen

The Singer

Cathi Unsworth

The Ghost Writer

John Harwood

The Skin Palace

Jack O'Connell

Lies, First Person

Gail Hareven

The Bone Keeper

Luca Veste

In the Dark

Andreas Pfluger

The Crooked Maid

Dan Vyleta

Beside Myself

Ann Morgan

A History of Loneliness

John Boyne

Forty Days Without Shadow

Olivier Truc

The Taker

Alma Katsu

After the Fire, a Still Small Voice

Evie Wyld

The Forest of Souls

Carla Banks

Never Anyone But You

Rupert Thomson

The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times

Xan Brooks

Confessions

Jaume Cabré

In the Rosary Garden

Nicola White

The Dead Won't Sleep

Anna Smith

The Company Man

Robert Jackson Bennett

The Crossroads

Niccolo Ammaniti

All the Colours of the Town

Liam McIlvanney

The Way of the Women

Marlene van Niekerk

Hellfire

Mia Gallagher

Faith Without Doubt

Anna Blundy

House of Leaves

Mark Z Danielewski

Thus Bad Begins

Javier Marías

The Machine

James Smythe

Umbrella

Will Self

As Meat Loves Salt

Maria McCann

Beneath the Skin

Nicci French

A Doubter's Almanac

Ethan Canin

The House of Shattered Wings

Aliette de Bodard

The Pleasures of Men

Kate Williams

The Devotion of Suspect X

Keigo Higashino

Mrs Lincoln

Janis Cooke Newman

In This Way I Was Saved

Brian DeLeeuw

Citizen One

Andy Oakes

Double Vision

Tricia Sullivan

The Diagnosis

Alan Lightman

The Wisdom of Crocodiles

Paul Hoffman

Kill the Father

Sandrone Dazieri

Go, Went, Gone

Jenny Erpenbeck