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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

One Of The Good Guys

Narrators: Elliot Fitzpatrick, Olivia Vinall,

Helen Keeley

Dreamscape Select,

ISBN: 9781666655605

Publisher: Gillian Flynn Books

Publication Date: 01/09/2024

Format: Audiobook

My Rating: 4 Stars


Two young women vanish in a seaside town.


At the cliff's edge, nobody is who they seem. Desperate to escape the ghosts of his failed marriage, Cole upends his life. He leaves London behind for a remote stretch of coast, relishing the respite from the noise, drama, and relentless careerism that curdled his relationship and mental health. Leonora has made the same move for similar reasons. She’s living a short walk from Cole’s seaside cottage, preparing for her latest art exhibition. Though Cole still can’t figure out what went wrong with his marriage, and Leonora is having trouble acclimating to the hostile landscape, the pair forges a connection on the eroding bluff they call home. Then, two young women activists raising awareness about gendered violence disappear while passing through.


Cole and Leonora find themselves in the middle of a police investigation and the resulting media firestorm when the world learns of what happened. And as the tension escalates alongside the search for the missing women, they quickly realize that they don’t know each other that well after all. From the critically acclaimed author of Our Kind of Cruelty and Imperfect Women, comes an urgent psychological thriller about gender, power, and how both are captured in our contemporary media environment. Unexpected and twisty from its first page to its last, One of the Good Guys asks: If most men claim to be good, why are most women still afraid to walk home alone at night?










My Review


Araminta Hall's third novel, ONE OF THE GOOD GUYS, is a provocative, dark, twisty, and thought-provoking feminist thriller. Psychologically rich and compelling, it is an essential novel exploring gender, power, art, and social commentary.


Cole has hit forty, and his marriage with Melanie has ended. He leaves London and moves to a remote coastal countryside town, accepts a position as a wildlife ranger, and moves into a cottage. He is enjoying getting back to nature. He sees himself as one of the "good guys."


He meets his neighbor, Leonora, an artist, and is attracted to her. Then, two young women (women's rights activists) vanish in a seaside town in a small cliffside coastal town where no one is who they seem.


As the investigation takes off, the two are engrossed in the police investigation and the media. Do the two know one another?


We also get insight into Melanie's perspective and she and Cole's relationship. Which one is telling the truth? What happened to the missing women?


Cleverly crafted, with multi-dimensional characters from themes of complex relationships, misogyny, consent, and power dynamics, ONE OF THE GOOD GUYS is powerful and moving, mixed with multiple perspectives and media— a fresh, modern, and important novel. It is intriguing and skillfully written, proposing key questions to ponder. How are women viewed in the modern world, plus more?


ONE OF THE GOOD GUYS is multi-faceted, layered, bold, timely, haunting, and atmospheric. Throughout, you feel a strong sense of foreboding and dread with each page turn, keeping you on the edge of your seat.


The author delivers a razor-sharp feminist suspense novel about the deceptions of toxic masculinity and violence against women with a twist and unreliable narrators. Highly recommend. The author's writing is impressive, and I think the fascinating novel would be a super book club pick for further discussions.


I listened to the audiobook narrated by Elliot Fitzpatrick, Olivia Vinall, and Helen Keeley for an engaging performance.


@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

Pub Date: Jan 9, 2024

My Rating: 4 Stars










Praise


A Paste Most Anticipated Mystery and Thriller Book of 2024

“Addictive and sharply realized . . . I became absolutely obsessed from the opening page.” ―Gillian Flynn, Gillian Flynn Books


“Will keep readers enthralled . . . In the vein of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, this is a psychological thriller that will have readers on the edge of their seats, pushing them to ponder difficult questions.”

―Linsey Milillo, Library Journal


“A fascinating read.”

―Kirkus Reviews


“Thought-provoking . . . Fans of Megan Abbott will want to check this out.” ―Publishers Weekly

“Riveting.”

―Star Tribune


“One of the Good Guys is a mind-bending tour de force. Araminta Hall has always been one of my favorite writers, but what she has done here is groundbreaking. This thriller is shocking, twisted, dark, and absolutely on point.”

―Samantha Downing, bestselling author of My Lovely Wife


“An absolutely thrilling tale, full of breathless cliffside terror and fresh feminist theory masked in tight, propulsive mystery. I devoured this book.”

―Lisa Taddeo journalist and Pushcart Prize–winning author of Three Women and Animal


“A dark, original and thought-provoking read. This book will hook you from the first page and keep you thinking long after the last.”

―Alice Feeney, New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Darker, Rock Paper Scissors, and Sometimes I Lie


"The best book I've read in a long time. One of the Good Guys is a dark, whip-smart thriller that's also laugh-out-loud funny. Hall answers #metoo and the masculinity crisis with nuance and insight. A must read."

―Sarah Langan, award-winning author ofGood Neighbors


“Mind. Blown. The brilliant Araminta Hall has created an absolute tour de force of suspense. Provocative, surprising, and entirely original, this tale of power and gender will not only have you looking at the world a different way, but will have you looking at yourself a different way. Hall’s brilliance with exquisite foreboding, with multi-layered but mysterious characters, and with her deep understanding of readers’ expectations make this one of the most thought-provoking and imaginative books I have ever read. I never even came close to guessing the ending, and gasped with envy and massive respect when I finished reading. If you have a book club―wow―this one’s for you. Drop everything, call Hollywood, and do not miss One of the Good Guys.”

―Hank Phillippi Ryan, USA Today bestselling author of The House Guest


“Compelling, unsettling, and nuanced, this will be a fast favorite for fans of dark domestic thrillers.”

―Booklist


“Scorching, smart, and soaked in feminist rage, this is a suspense that stays with you long after the last page.”

―Ellery Lloyd, author of People Like Her and The Club


“One of the Good Guys is a riveting and kaleidoscopic look at women swept up in the current of toxic masculinity and the blowback when they pull themselves to safety. From art to media, Hall leaves no corner of the attack on women’s safety and sanity unexplored in her adept and sharp multifaceted novel. Powerful and inspired―empowering and inspirational.”

―Ivy Pochoda, author of Sing Her Down


“Araminta Hall’s latest, One of the Good Guys, is both a scintillating thriller and a scorching condemnation of how differently society treats men versus women, especially in the social media age. Cole and Lennie are flawed, complex characters who will stick with you long after you reach its shocking conclusion. Their relationship will make you reexamine your idea of fear, perception, and public opinion.”

―Kellye Garrett, award-winning and Edgar-nominated author of Like a Sister and Missing White Woman


“I am not easily shocked, but One of the Good Guys went places even my twisted mind had never imagined. Araminta Hall is a master of suspense, and her latest novel is a timely, thrilling tale that offers no easy villains or heroes, but loads of surprises. Beautifully written, deliciously tense, and entirely surprising―I tore through it.”

―Julia Dahl, author of The Missing Hours and Invisible City


“One of the Good Guys has everything I love in a novel: pitch-perfect storytelling and a twisty plot that plays out in a haunting, atmospheric setting. Araminta Hall has crafted an incisive feminist suspense novel about delusion, deception, and the poisonous nature of toxic masculinity. A daring, breathless read.”

―Caitlin Mullen, Edgar award-winning author of Please See Us


“A bold an on point feminist thriller about gendered violence with Gone Girl twistiness and narrator unreliability.”

―Victoria Selman, bestselling author of Truly Darkly Deeply and the Ziba MacKenzie series


“It got me by the throat and wouldn’t let go. It’s creepy, thought-provoking, compelling, and so very relevant.”

―Julie Cohen, bestselling author of Dear Thing and Summer People


“One of the Good Guys has it all: pitch-perfect writing, superb characterization, innovative narration, and deeply sophisticated storytelling. This book delves into the painful and messy complexities of misogyny, consent, and gendered power dynamics with an unflinching narrative scalpel. I have long been a fan of Araminta Hall’s writing, and her latest book absolutely spearheads the razor-sharp new trend in feminist thrillers.”

―Philippa East, author of Little White Lies and I’ll Never Tell


“A dark, dazzling shock to the system. One of the Good Guys is clever, composed, exciting and frightening.”

―Chris Whitaker, author of Tall Oaks and We Begin at the End


“One of the Good Guys doesn't just tell a story. It makes you think, it makes you angry, and it makes you want to read it again. So clever and subtly drawn, and yet the impact it leaves is extraordinary. Shocking and timely―dark fiction at its very best.”

―Caroline Frear, author of Sweet Little Lies


“One of the Good Guys is clever, crafty, and thought-provoking. I felt like I was reading about events that were actually taking place in real time. We live in febrile times and this novel perfectly captures this zeitgeist. I can’t express this enough when I say, trust no one. Brilliant, timely, and necessary. Really enjoyed it.”

― Dorothy Koomson, bestselling author of My Best Friend’s Girl, The Ice Cream Girls, and The Woman He Loved Before


“A story that will stay with you long after the last page. Terrifying because it all reads so painfully true and familiar if you are a woman nowadays.” ―Laure Van Rensburg, author of Nobody But Us

“Clever, disturbing, challenging, twisty and utterly compelling. A brilliant, thought-provoking novel for our times.”

―Peter James, author of Stop Them Dead


“Wow, I loved this topical, clever and tricksy novel. A book for the #metoo generation that taps into all kinds of fears/hopes/difficulties that come with the movement. You’ll think one thing . . . and then another . . . and then another. With clever use of social media and newspaper pieces, the conclusion is a masterpiece. Highly recommend.” ―Louise Swanson, author of End of Story

“It’s so clever it blew my mind a bit. It’s about men and women and trust and art and violence and safety. And it’s just excellent.”

―Laura Pearson, author of The Last List of Mabel Beaumont






About the Author

Photo Credit: Violet Aitchison



Araminta Hall has an MA in creative writing and authorship from the University of Sussex, and teaches creative writing at New Writing South in Brighton, where she lives with her husband and three children. She is the author of Our Kind of Cruelty, which was named a best book of 2018 by CrimeReads and Real Simple.

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