Suzi Feay

Silent Witness

Outline

By

Faber & Faber 256pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

There is a gulf at the heart of this book. The narrator, while undeniably ‘there’ – she is continually observing and commenting – remains an enigma, with little back story. We discover quite late on that she is called Faye, and it’s jarring finally to have a name for this ambiguous entity.

The novel is mostly set in Athens, where Faye has come to teach a creative writing course. But first she must have lunch with a bookish billionaire in a London club. ‘A lot of people want to be writers: there was no reason to think you couldn’t buy your way into it.’ The subsequent plane trip is deftly described. Next to the narrator is ‘a swarthy boy with lolling knees whose fat thumbs sped around the screen of a gaming console’. Later, when she hands him a tray of food, he ‘silently lifted up his gaming console with both hands so that I could place it on the folded-down table in front of him’. Rudeness, egotism and inattention to others are very much on the narrator’s radar. 

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • John Stubbs reviews Stephen Greenblatt's latest, 'Tyrant: Shakespeare on Power' ,
    • RT : What happened when US military strategist Herman Kahn - one of Kubrick’s three models for Dr Strangelove - took LSD… ,
    • 'Pollan has no doubt that the use of psychedelics could have a powerfully beneficial effect on a range of condition… ,
    • A memoir about an Untouchable family and the 'formation of modern India': 'Ants among Elephants' by @gidla_sujatha… ,
    • RT : First founded in Edinburgh in 1979, is considered a trusted independent source for reviews of new book… ,
    • 'In different ways Hatherley makes gritty Lódź and poor old which-country-are-we-in-this-week Lviv sound entrancing… ,
    • In this issue Lucy Popescu discusses the miscarriages of justice occurring in the investigation over Maltese journa… ,