True Crime Story

True Crime Story
Genre : Fiction
Published : 17 Jun 2021 - Doubleday
"What happens to those girls who go missing? What happens to the Zoe Nolans of the world?"

In the early hours of Saturday, December 17th, 2011, Zoe Nolan, a 19-year-old Manchester University student, walked out of a party taking place in the shared accommodation where she had been living for three months.

She was never seen again.

Blending fact and fiction in his first stand-alone novel, Joseph Knox delivers a thrilling true crime story like no other.


The most exciting and original crime book you’ll read this year

Anna Mazzola

An audacious idea, ingeniously executed

Sarah Hilary

This reads like a cinematic true crime documentary. Brilliant, compelling and original.

Steve Cavanagh

I've spent the last few days completely engrossed in TRUE CRIME STORY, a highly original & mischievous novel...In lesser hands, the central conceit - no spoilers - wouldn't work, but in Knox's, it's a complete triumph.

John Boyne

Absolutely brilliant. I think it’s a game-changer.

Martyn Waites

Pure genius – all the things you want to a crime novel to be, also hilarious. I love it.

Jane Casey

TRUE CRIME STORY is phenomenal. One of the most original thrillers I’ve read in years, perhaps ever. A gritty, twisted murder mystery told in the unique style of a true crime account. I’ve rarely raced through a book so fast....Absolutely remarkable.

Robyn Young

This man knows what he’s doing with a story. Gossip, bonechilling weirdness, heartbreaking sadness, a perfect description of the Trafford Centre, all in the one novel.

Beth Underdown

[a] work of outstanding and staggering genius…You always get beautiful prose and a crackling plot from Mr Knox. But this has extra madness. It’s the most original book I’ve read in ages.

Imran Mahmood

Riveting and relentless. A unique story, brilliantly told

Terry Hayes

It has a startlingly original style... extremely well done.

Tom Bradby, Daily Mail

The real Mr Knox is a fantastic writer. His ambitious fourth novel satirises and celebrates the true-crime genre with glee. TRUE CRIME STORY, by turns horrific and hilarious, is scandalously entertaining.

The Times

The gifted Joseph Knox continues his upwards trajectory with TRUE CRIME STORY, forging something original and innovative. <br />

Financial Times

Joseph Knox now offers an ingenious metafictional work about a cold case involving the disappearance of Zoe Nolan…This is one of the most engaging cold-case novels I have read.

Literary Review

TRUE CRIME STORY is unnerving, intriguing, superbly constructed and very clever.

Irish Independent

Knox the author pulls off a hybrid triumph: at once an old-fashioned whodunnit and a smart postmodern literary novel asking questions about the ethics of all editing, as well as the true-crime genre. Dazzlingly original.

The Sunday Times pick of the best thrillers for June 2021

TRUE CRIME STORY is truly immersive: complex, disturbing, unexpectedly funny and very smart.

"The best recent crime and thrillers", The Guardian

TRUE CRIME STORY is breathtaking, a dazzling display of clever plotting and good writing. It’s hugely entertaining but also moving, and occasionally shocking. It shouldn’t work, but it does, quite brilliantly, and as with all the best tricks it’s almost impossible to see how it’s done. Prepare to be baffled. You’ll love it.

Jane Casey, Irish Independent

...a bravura performance; its darkness leavened by some very black humour.

Mail on Sunday

This satire of the true crime genre is ingenious, funny and totally original.

The Sun

Supple and urgent - another slab of Knox brilliance


...this is astonishing! So clever, so original.

Jane Fallon

Joseph Knox has produced something extraordinary…This post-modern playfulness works because it is embedded in a rich and compelling plot that twists and turns until the final pages. Sometimes risk pays off.

The Big Issue

A very stylish novel revealing not only the unreliability of witnesses, but also the voyeurism in much crime reporting, crime investigation, and yes, in those of us who enjoy crime fiction.

The Tablet

Joseph Knox’s TRUE CRIME STORY is the perfect read for Halloween. Centring on the disappearance of student Zoe Nolan (and with a cracking cast of characters, including Knox himself), the book is ambitious, disturbing and very, very smart. What’s more, TRUE CRIME STORY perfectly captures the shadowy side of the city – those Manchester nights when revelry might just tip over into the doing of darker deeds.

Beth Underdown, Dead Good

TRUE CRIME STORY by Joseph Knox is a mix of found footage and oral history that is made for true-crime podcast addicts.


A thriller of genuine (but pleasurable) unease.

Daily Telegraph

...the writing is supple and urgent...


…an old-fashioned whodunnit and a smart literary novel questioning the true crime genre.

Paperback of the Week, The Sunday Times

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