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The Murderer

Published by McNally Editions
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

The portrait of a dangerous and unknowable lost soul, by “a chronicler nonpareil of 20th-century Guyanese life.” (Margaret Busby, The Guardian)

About The Author

Born in what was then British Guiana, Roy Heath (1926–2008) grew up in a working-class neighborhood of Georgetown and in the coastal village of Agricola. In 1950, he moved to London to pursue graduate studies in modern languages; for many years he worked as a schoolteacher of French and German. He published his first novel, A Man Come Home (1974), at the age of forty-eight; his second novel, The Murderer, received the Guardian Fiction Prize. He would publish eight more books, all of them set in Guyana, a country to which he often returned.

Product Details

  • Publisher: McNally Editions (May 3, 2022)
  • Length: 256 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781946022356

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Raves and Reviews

"The Murderer is a strange, luminous, and beguiling work by a writer with a mysterious and captivating Caribbean voice, who shied away from publicity and is now resurrected."


"The Murderer, Roy Heath's masterpiece, is written with immediacy and precision. In a few sentences, Heath creates a psychological tension that is totally convincing and gripping. Slowly, as the main character grows more obsessed and distant from others, he also becomes more complex and fascinating and memorable."

– Colm Tóibín

“Roy Heath’s novels are unlike any I have ever read . . . After some acquaintance with Heath’s characters, the reader finds them not in the least strange, but so familiar as to be frightening.”

– Susan Fromberg Schaeffer, London Review of Books

“Roy Heath’s study of a mind fumbling with shadows . . . has a Dostoievskian power and a haunting Guyanese backdrop that any number of clever and facile novels could not exorcise from my memory.”

– Christopher Wordsworth, The Observer

“A beautiful writer and an unforgettable book.”

– Salman Rushdie

“A writer of prodigious talent and, in his fiction, a chronicler nonpareil of 20th-century Guyanese life and lore.”

– Margaret Busby, The Guardian

“Move Crime and Punishment from the slums of St. Petersburg to the slums of Georgetown, Guyana, and you’ll have something like The Murderer.”

– Michael Harris, Los Angeles Times Book Review

"Roy Heath is one of those gifted writers whose prose seems at once spare and rich . . . The compression, the exotic setting, the faint, persistent threat of violence—the combination works like a troubling dream . . . [A] remarkable novel.”

– Adam Begley, Boston Review

“Simply one of the most astonishingly good novelists of our time.”


– Edward Blishen

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