I Saw a Man | Penguin Random House Canada

I Saw a Man

Publisher: Anchor Canada
An utterly stunning novel of love, loss, the insidious nature of secrets, and the enduring power of words. I Saw a Manfulfills the promise of Owen Sheers' acclaimed novel, Resistance.

When journalist Caroline Marshall dies while on assignment in Pakistan, her grief-stricken husband, Michael, leaves their cottage in Wales and returns to London. He quickly develops a friendship with his neighbours, Josh and Samantha Nelson, and their two young daughters. Michael's growing relationship with the family marks the beginning of a long healing process.
     But his period of recovery comes to an abrupt end when a terrible accident brings the burden of a shattering secret into his life. How will Michael bear the agonizing weight of guilt as he navigates persistent doubts on the path to attempted redemption? The answer, revealed poignantly in Sheers' masterly prose, is eloquent, resonant, and completely unforgettable.


A Guardian Best Book of the Year

"It is a measure of Mr. Sheers's artfulness and exquisite narrative control that even though he withholds for half of the novel the solution to the mystery posed in the first paragraph, he never loses us. . . . You can hear his poet's voice in his sharp, taut and often lyrically beautiful language." —The New York Times

"If you like your fiction served at a thrilling pace with arcing storylines that bring global politics right into the lives of ordinary people then I Saw a Man is for you. . . . [it] has the gripping pace and drama of a Gone Girl-esque blockbuster. . . . gorgeously written." ―Stylist (UK)

"Owen Sheers' new novel spins a disquieting web of complicity, guilt, and blame. . . . Sheers' own language is consistently rich and engaging, precisely calibrated to the circumstances he’s describing." ―Slate

"Sheers' thriller is driven as much by subtle ideas as suspense. He works back from and up to the cataclysm, painting a psychologically astute portrait . . . [a] clever novel." ―The Independent (UK) 

"A powerful moral thriller . . . Sheers skilfully drip-feeds the reader his characters' secrets and lies, including a remarkable sequence leading up to the book's central, shocking moment of revelation. I Saw a Man's ending is similarly bravura, elegantly throwing into new light much of what has gone before." ―Literary Review (UK)

"The stately prose and cool omniscience in I Saw A Man provide the perfect cover for the roiling sea of emotions under its surface . . . Settled domesticity gives way to a quietly charged, Dostoyevskian psychic chaos whose outcomes are thrillingly uncertain." ―Matthew Thomas, New York Times bestselling author of We Are Not Ourselves

"A gripping and stylish thriller . . . finely tuned suspense that erupts into visceral drama. An award-winning poet, [Sheers'] honed prose is full of images of photographic sharpness that leap from the page. But this is also a novel driven by ideas, which, in keeping with its central theme, spins out across the world. . . . The manner in which they're ultimately resolved is bold and satisfying." 
The Daily Mail (UK)

"A widower's grief leads him on a disturbing journey of discovery in this elegantly moving novel. . . . deeply poignant . . . A profound meditation on memory and mourning, Sheers's novel captures the 'unbearably fragile' nature of joy and movingly depicts the haunting physical reminders we leave behind―footprints and fingerprints; breath fogging up glass―and the indelible emotional imprints too, the love that remains long after the beloved person has gone." ―The Observer (UK)

"Owen Sheers's powerful second novel is a dark study of brutality, grief and guilt. . . . there are so many expertly detonated surprises. . . . This is an exemplary thriller, clever, classy, slick—and always one step ahead of the reader."
The Sunday Times (UK)

"I Saw a Man takes an intimate look at the way power struggles can infiltrate a community, placing a quietly disturbing thriller in an unashamedly lovely setting. . . . pulsing through it all is a poet's commitment to plumbing the depths of the human heart, however sick or banal they may be. . . . a rare and luscious treat for the common reader."
The Times (UK)

"[A] highly original, engrossing literary thriller. . . . [featuring] a love story that is a marvel of freshness and compression. . . . [Sheers is] such a large talent . . . a resourceful writer with a sharp eye for both the big picture and the lovely detail."
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

From the Hardcover edition.