“The truth about the Harry Quebert affair” is a novel written by Joël Dicker, a Swiss writer. It was published in the USA on 27th May, 2014. The original French version has sold more than 1 million copies and, including the translations into 32 languages, the book has sold more than 3 million copies.
This novel has been very appreciated in Europe, but opinions have been different in North America, in fact it has received middling reviews due to clichés and its writing style.
Despite that, “The truth about the Harry Quebert affair” won some French literary prizes such as the famous Prix Goncourt des Lycéens. In its almost 700 pages, the novel tells the story of Marcus Goldman, a successful writer, who is frustrated from his writing block. For this reason he is hosted in his college professor’s house in New Hampshire. That’s where Harry Quebert, Marcus Goldman’s teacher, mentor and friend comes in. After Marcus’ stay to focus on his writing, he returns home and receives a shocking news: Nora Kellergan’s body has been found after 33 years in Quebert’s property. The old teacher is accused of murder and asks Marcus for help.
The book is centred on Goldman’s investigation, full of plot twists and sad stories, which will bring the successful writer to finally discover the truth about the Harry Quebert affair.
Almost all the characters are perfectly developed and described, but on the other hand there are a few who are quite flat and briefly presented.
The dialogues are the most important ingredients in this novel but sometimes are out of line such as the dialogues between Marcus and his mother. The descriptions are precise, but at times too long and boring.
The story in general is well-written and understandable, the reading is clear and flowing (despite the 700 pages, it is simple to finish reading the book in less than two weeks). The plot twists are perfectly placed in the right moments and are never trivial.
The result is a big and interesting thriller, a triumph for the ones who love reading this genre.