I missed The Woman In The Library when it first came out in 2022, but I was thrilled to be invited to join the Ultimo Press readalong in the lead-up to the release of Sulari Gentill’s next novel (The Mystery Writer, out next month!).

I don’t want to overstate things, but I think The Woman In The Library is going to be one of the best books I read this year. It’s a meta-fictional mystery, a book-within-a-book, with two puzzles playing out on the page. This twisty and mischievous novel was a true delight to read.

Hannah Tigone is a crime writer, working on a novel that begins in the Boston Library. Four strangers get to talking after a woman’s scream in the next room breaks the silence. Later, they discover that the woman who screamed was murdered – could one of them be the killer?

Chapter by chapter, Hannah forwards her work-in-progress to her writer friend Leo, who is struggling to sell his own manuscript and hopes that providing feedback will stimulate his creative juices. As the story plays out, you’ll realise that Leo might not be exactly what he seems…

The Woman In The Library has whiffs of Donna Tartt’s The Secret History and Catherine Ryan Howard’s The Nothing Man, but with an alchemy that seems entirely Gentill’s own. The big clang comes on page 132, and from there it’s a thrilling ride all the way to the finish. I honestly cannot recommend it highly enough – and my breath could not be more bated for The Mystery Writer!

Buy The Woman In The Library from Booktopia here. (affiliate link)
Get The Woman In The Library on audiobook via Libro.fm here. (affiliate link)