Michael Winter The Death of Donna Whalen

ISBN 13: 9780143053385

The Death of Donna Whalen

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9780143053385: The Death of Donna Whalen

When Donna Whalen is stabbed thirty-one times in her home on Empire Avenue in St. John’s, her friends, family, and neighbours believe the culprit to be her abusive boyfriend, Sheldon Troke. But the evidence is circumstantial, the testimonies tainted by personal bias and attempts at deception. Police and prosecutors face a daunting challenge, and the course of justice, with all its intricacies and failings, takes many unpredictable turns before the truth is finally revealed.

In this extraordinary novel, Michael Winter has mined the records of Sheldon’s trial—thousands of pages of court transcripts, police wiretaps, newspaper reports, private letters and diary entries—and distilled their raw, naked truth into a mesmerizing work of documentary fiction that captures the myriad voices of the people involved.

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About the Author:

MICHAEL WINTER is the author of The Architects Are Here, which was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and The Big Why, which was shortlisted for the Trillium Book Award and longlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. His previous novel, The Death of Donna Whalen, was nominated for the Writers' Trust Fiction Prize and the Commonwealth Writers' Prize. His first novel, This All Happened, won the Winterset Award. He is also the recipient of The Writers' Trust Notable Author Award. He divides his time between Toronto and St. John's.

Review:

“Extraordinary ... turning the spotlight entirely on this devastating array of intersecting lives and deaths, Winter has enacted some of the most powerful storytelling of his career.” - The Globe and Mail

“Winter fashions these disparate voices—children, neighbours, friends, family—into a compelling narrative that’s like As I Lay Dying meets In Cold Blood. This is an endlessly fascinating glimpse into a side of St. John’s that’s seldom seen.” - National Post

“Winter has produced one of the best documentary accounts of a Canadian crime ever written.” - Edmonton Journal

“[A] compelling reconstruction that gives a raw jolt to the conventional novel form.... Winter has done an exemplary job in this regard, orchestrating the various speakers into a tragic chorus over the short unhappy life of Donna Whalen.” - Toronto Star

“The Death of Donna Whalen weaves its spell in small increments, one character’s voice giving way to another’s and then another’s, an immersion in the low life that pulses with veracity.” - Vancouver Sun

“A dark morality tale.... A brave work that showcases a stylist playing to his strengths, and it will undoubtedly reward the patient reader.” - The Walrus

“The Death of Donna Whalen is well-crafted, a magic lantern kind of story.” - The Telegram (St. John’s, NL)

“The Death of Donna Whalen stands on its own as a literary effort that conjures a potent sensation of disquiet out of the grim details of an actual tragedy.” - Quill & Quire

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