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- The Reader
Writing with a pace and intensity surpassing even her own greatest work, Anita Shreve delivers in TESTIMONY a gripping emotional drama with the impact of a thriller. No one more compellingly explores the dark impulses that sway the lives of seeming innocents, the needs and fears that drive ordinary men and women into intolerable dilemmas, and the ways in which our best intentions can lead to our worst transgressions.
A fast-paced novel with a provocative plot, Anita Shreve's latest book focuses on a tragic scandal at a high-status private school in Vermont. When a sex tape implicating a freshman girl and three members of the boys' basketball team surfaces, controversy rocks the Avery Academya place where the students are growing up faster than their parents realize. The shocking videotapewhich features school sports star Silas Quinneyhas far-reaching effects, resulting in a meaningless death and the destruction of three families. Mike Bordwin, the institution's headmaster, recounts the initial scandal, but the narrative soon shifts to include the perspectives of the students, their parents and other individuals whose lives are affected by the tape. Through the skillful use of varied points of view, Shreve is able to examine events from all angles, and her development of this prep-school cast of characters gives the story flavor and authenticity. The best-selling author of 14 novels, including The Pilot's Wife, an Oprah's Book Club selection, Shreve has crafted a resonant and suspenseful work of literary fiction. This is a rich examination of modern moral codes cloaked in the guise of a thrillera gripping novel that will strike a chord with readers.
A reading group guide is included in the book.