The Body Lies

The Body Lies

3.63 (303 ratings by Goodreads)
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'Gripping and fast-paced' Good Housekeeping

'Powerful and moving' ERIN KELLY, author of He Said/She Said

When a young writer accepts a job at a university in the remote countryside, it's meant to be a fresh start, away from the big city and the scene of a violent assault she's desperate to forget. But when one of her students starts sending in chapters from his novel that blur the lines between fiction and reality, the professor recognises herself as the main character in his book - and he has written her a horrific fate.

Will she be able to stop life imitating art before it's too late?

At once a breathless battle-of-wits and a disarming exploration of sexual politics, The Body Lies is an essential book for our times.


'A literary exploration of consent, entitlement and how narratives can be bent, misappropriated and wrested back. I loved it' SARAH VAUGHAN

'A propulsive #MeToo thriller.' GUARDIAN

'Gripping. The perfect marriage of risky literary fiction and full-on thriller' MARIA SEMPLE

'Page-turning thriller and examination of how women's bodies are treated, in life and in fiction.' THE BOOKSELLER

'A novelist with a gift for intimate and atmospheric storytelling' FINANCIAL TIMES

'Baker's heroine is one of the most believable I've seen on the page in a long time...nuanced, non-linear, lifelike' TLS
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Product details

  • Hardback | 288 pages
  • 144 x 222 x 29mm | 407g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 085752643X
  • 9780857526434
  • 21,152

Review Text

"All too plausible, Baker’s powerful tale is at times heart-rending to read—and impossible to put down."
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Review quote

"A propulsive #MeToo thriller investi-gating consent and male entitlement as well as the borders between truth and fiction." * Guardian * "Build-up of tension is EXCELLENT" * Daily Mail * "Packs a powerful punch on every page" * Red Magazine * "Gripping ... with lots to say about sexual politics" * Good Housekeeping * "This superior thriller looks at how novels represent violence through the story of a creative writing teacher who finds herself trapped between the borders of life and fiction after recognising herself in a story written by one of her students" * METRO * "Powerful read" * Prima Magazine * "Jo Baker's THE BODY LIES is gripping and strange in the best possible way: the perfect marriage of risky literary fiction and full-on thriller." * MARIA SEMPLE, bestselling author of Where d'ya go, Bernadette? * "This page-turning thrilller has a sympathetic and utterly believable heroine, but it's also an examination of how women's bodies are treated, in life and in fiction." * The Bookseller * "A literary exploration of consent, entitlement and how narratives can be bent, misappropriated and wrested back. I loved it." * SARAH VAUGHAN, bestselling author of THE ANATOMY OF A SCANDAL * "A shrewdly layered thriller that unflinchingly tackles the quagmire of pressure, judgement and ever-present danger women navigate in their daily lives" * Herald Scotland * "Powerful and moving, I read The Body Lies in one sitting. As a thriller, it grips and shocks: as a portrayal of the way women move through the world, and the way men see them, it has never been more timely. Absolutely stunning." * ERIN KELLY, bestselling author of HE SAID/SHE SAID * "A story of female response to male threat, boosted by questions of literary expression... Baker's fans will enjoy the crisp descriptive writing and insightful nuances" * Kirkus Reviews * "All too plausible, Baker's powerful tale is at times heart-rending to read-and impossible to put down." * Publishers Weekly * "The beauty and structure of Baker's language, the way she decided to tell this particular story, the suspense... It has stayed in my head for days." * Jamie Southern, Bookmarks, NC * "The Body Lies is so much more than just a thriller. It's a literary analysis on the way that our social environment shapes creative writing and individual voice; a heartfelt depiction of assault-related trauma and the associated anxiety and depression; an incisive commentary on the constant, subtle ways that women's consent is invalidated. And on top of all that it's a riveting, compelling murder mystery, intensely readable." * Genevieve Taylor, Boulder Bookstore, CO * "Jo Baker makes a huge departure in style with this menacing story of a student and teacher. A young college instructor begins to see entirely too much of herself in the work of one of her writing students who claims to only "write the truth." As the threats become more overt, the stakes increase until it becomes unclear who will triumph in this game of cat and mouse. This nail biter of a novel will leave readers deeply unsettled and checking the door locks."" * Pamela Klinger-Horn, Excelsior Bay Books, Excelsior, Minnesota * "Baker's powerful tale is at times heart-rending to read-and impossible to put down." * Publishers' Weekly US * "Beyond the twists and turns of the thriller, The Body Lies also stands out for its careful examination of the role of women, both in these thriller novels and within society, making this book a powerful and unnerving read with thrills that run much deeper than your average surface shocks ... Impossible to put down." * Culturefly * "Baker's layered and sharply observed writing feels authentic from the first . . . Moving beyond boundaries to divine the essence of what it is to be a woman navigating life in modern-day Britain." * Claire Thinking * "An essential book for our times . . . this is a thrilling, gripping read" * Tales Before Bedtime *
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About Jo Baker

JO BAKER is the author of the acclaimed and bestselling LONGBOURN and A COUNTRY ROAD, A TREE. Her new novel, THE BODY LIES, is a thrilling contemporary novel that explores violence against women in fiction but is also a disarming story of sexual politics. Jo Baker lives with her family in Lancashire.
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Rating details

303 ratings
3.63 out of 5 stars
5 19% (57)
4 39% (119)
3 30% (92)
2 10% (30)
1 2% (5)
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