Tony and Susan


By Austin Wright

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Fifteen years ago, Susan Morrow left her first husband, Edward Sheffield, an unpublished writer. Now, she’s enduring middle class suburbia as a doctor’s wife, when out of the blue she receives a package containing the manuscript of her ex-husband’s first novel. He writes asking her to read the book; she was always his best critic, he says.

As Susan reads, she is drawn into the fictional life of Tony Hastings, a math professor driving his family to their summer house in Maine. And as we read with her, we too become lost in Sheffield’s thriller. As the Hastings’ ordinary, civilized lives are disastrously, violently sent off course, Susan is plunged back into the past, forced to confront the darkness that inhabits her, and driven to name the fear that gnaws at her future and will change her life.

Tony and Susan is a dazzling, eerie, riveting novel about fear and regret, blood and revenge, marriage and creativity. It is simply one of a kind. “A superb and thrilling novel…extrodinary.” — Ian McEwan

“Compelling…mesmerizing…absolutely irresistible.”–New York Times

“A perfect and literary puzzle, an irresistible tale anout marriage and murder, both thriling and moving.” — Scott Turow

“A page-turner of a literary thriller.” — Sara Waters

“Beautifully written, perfectly paced, impressively clever, and ultimately shocking in a way you never see coming.” — Nelson DeMille

“Absolutely terrifying, beautiful, and appalling. Parts of it shocked me, and I am not easily shocked.” — Ruth Rendell

  • "Marvellously written --the last thing you would expect in a story of blood and revenge. Beautiful."
    Saul Bellow
  • "Compelling...Mesmerizing...Absolutely irresistible."
    The New York Times
  • "A masterpiece...A brilliant, brainy novel full of thrills...It would be easy to say that his critical intelligence dominates Tony and Susan, but Wright is a wonderful storyteller, a wonderful novelist...Tony and Susan makes one hunger to read more of Wright's work. "
    Chicago-Sun Times
  • "Absorbing, terrifying, beautiful . . . unforgettable."
    Ruth Rendell
  • "A brilliant novel...Astute, cunning and thrilling in equal measure...deserves to be found by a whole new generation of readers"
    Independent (UK)
  • "My favorite novel of 2010 would have been my favorite novel of 1993 -- if only I had known about it...Wright died at the age of 80; in 2010 TONY AND SUSAN returns to print as his stunning literary legacy."
    Min Jin Lee, The Times (UK)

On Sale
Aug 11, 2011
Page Count
336 pages

Austin Wright

About the Author

Austin Wright was born in New York in 1922. He was a novelist and academic, for many years Professor Emeritus of English at the University of Cincinnati. He lived with his wife and daughters in Cincinnati, and died in 2003 at the age of eighty.

Learn more about this author