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Heather, The Totality


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About the Author

Matthew Weiner is the creator of Mad Men, and worked as executive producer, writer and director on the show, which is widely considered one of the greatest television series of all time. He has received nine Emmys for his work on Mad Men and The Sopranos. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, architect Linda Brettler, and their four sons.


Heather, The Totality is superb. It gripped me at once. There was no question of turning away at any point. Weiner conveys the sense that beyond the brilliantly chosen details there was a wealth of similarly truthful social and psychological perception unstated. Then there was the ice-cold mercilessness, of a kind that reminded me (oddly, I suppose, but there it was) of Evelyn Waugh. This novel is something special -- PHILIP PULLMAN
Beautifully written . . . Curious and unexpected -- JOHN BANVILLE * * Guardian * *
A lean, sharp meta-thriller. The writing is laconic and assured . . . . Superb * * Spectator * *
Holds you in a way novels seldom do . . . It should be consumed in one sitting * * Financial Times * *
This short novel of upper-crust anomie and class-divide obsession is a scorcher! It's the classic noir construction: the short walk off the long ledge and the plummet to an indifferent Hell. Matthew Weiner demonically delivers the goods! Read this book in one gasping breath -- JAMES ELLROY
Obsession, wealth, anomie, parenting and sociopathic fantasy; about what happens when a young girl comes into contact with an evil man . . . Engaging and brilliant * * Sunday Times * *
Chilling and poised, I loved it -- MAGGIE O'FARRELL
A bleakly elegant tale of ennui and class envy . . . Weiner has a knack for writing sentences that grab and grip . . . addictive, even thrilling * * Observer * *
An exciting debut novel with a fast-paced plot and plenty of suspense * * Vogue * *
Short and rapier-sharp, Matthew Weiner's Heather, The Totality compels and unnerves in equal measure. Like the great Patricia Highsmith, Weiner renders the disturbing not just plausible but exquisitely, agonisingly inevitable. A tour de force -- CLAIRE MESSUD
Heather, The Totality is a tour de force of control, tone and razor-slash insight. In its clear-eyed anatomist's gaze and its remarkable combination of empathy and pitilessness I hear echoes of Flaubert and Richard Yates, with a deeply twisted twist of Muriel Spark at her darkest. I could not put it down -- MICHAEL CHABON
Brief but with a big punch . . . Weiner paints a detailed, achingly insightful picture * * ELLE * *
A miraculous and fearless novel, Heather is unprecedented. As well as being smart, sharp and readable, it proves there are still fresh and exciting ways to write fiction -- M.J. HYLAND
Compelling . . . skilfully structured * * Daily Mail * *
Beautifully nuanced * * GQ, The Book to Read * *
Told in a filmic tone you'd expect from an esteemed script-writer . . . it's an insightful little dip into a foreign world, filled with forensic details * * Grazia * *
Strange and unsettling . . . A quality piece of fiction, one that will leave readers both uncomfortable and impressed * * Irish Times * *
A lean slice of noir * * Mail on Sunday, The Best New Fiction * *
Full of tension and pace, this is a thought-provoking examination of how parenthood can undermine a marriage * * Daily Express * *
Weiner is a suspense artist . . . [His] book shares Mad Men's stylish brutality, but this chilly, tense novella about control and social standing is infinitely more subtle * * Times Literary Supplement * *
Weiner keeps the prose sharp, controlled and cutting as he describes a marriage in crisis * * Sunday Express * *
His screenwriter's taste for clinical, descriptive prose works thrillingly . . . as paragraphs that begin in innocuous fashion build to unexpectedly visceral crescendos . . . [A] dark, compelling picture of American society * * Literary Review * *
There are real pleasures here . . . Weiner's writing comes to life **** * * Daily Telegraph * *
I cringed and shuddered my way through this short, daring novel to its terrible inevitable end. Each neat, measured paragraph carpaccios its characters to get to the book's heart - one of Boschian self-cannibalising isolation. A stunning novel. Heather, The Totality blew me away -- NICK CAVE
Weiner displays an impressive turn of phrase, and deftly crafts tension in this brief, thought-provoking novel, which skewers class assumptions and questions how well anyone really knows those closest to them * * Scotsman * *
Short and chilling . . . What ensues is at times almost unbearably menacing . . . the climax also pulls off the trick of being both completely unexpected and somehow inevitable - at which point the reader can finally breathe out * * Reader's Digest * *
It is a slip of a thing, but it grips like a box set nonetheless . . . Weiner's prose is spare - almost to the point of deadening - as it jump-cuts between perspectives and times, keeping the reader guessing on who will crack first * * iNews * *
A short, sharp journey, but, Carver-like, it will leave you gasping * * The Pool * *

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