First Person (Hardcover)

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Father to a young daughter and husband to a wife pregnant with twins, Kif Kehlmann is also a struggling, penniless writer desperately looking for a break. So when notorious con man and convicted white-collar criminal Siegfried Heidl asks Kif to ghostwrite his tell-all memoir, Kif lunges at the opportunity. But Kif’s hopeful excitement quickly turns to fear as the dark and disturbing truth of Heidl’s past reveals itself. As Kif slowly loses his grip on reality and is consumed by paranoia and self-doubt, the story feverishly crescendos to a chilling conclusion. Richard Flanagan, blending his characteristically stunning prose with a palpable sense of danger found in the best thrillers, has crafted an emotional, darkly comic parable for our age of alternative facts.

— Brian


From the Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Narrow Road to the Deep North, the hypnotic tale of a ghost writer writing the memoir of a notorious con man, and the chilling events that unfold as their lives become increasingly intertwined.

Kif Kehlmann, a young, penniless writer, is rung in the middle of the night by the notorious con man and corporate criminal, Siegfried Heidl. About to go to trial for defrauding the banks of $700 million, Heidl offers Kehlmann the job of ghost writing his memoir. He has six weeks to write the book, for which he'll be paid $10,000.
But as the writing gets under way, Kehlmann begins to fear that he is being corrupted by Heidl. As the deadline draws closer, he becomes ever more unsure if he is ghost writing a memoir, or if Heidl is rewriting him--his life, his future. Everything that was certain grows uncertain as he begins to wonder: Who is Siegfried Heidl--and who is Kif Kehlmann?
As time runs out, as Kehlmann's world feels it is hurtling toward a catharsis, one question looms above all others: What is the truth?
By turns compelling, comic, and chilling, this is a haunting journey into the heart of our age.

About the Author

RICHARD FLANAGAN's novels, Death of a River Guide, The Sound of One Hand Clapping, Gould's Book of Fish, The Unknown Terrorist, Wanting, and The Narrow Road to the Deep North, for which he was awarded the 2014 Man Booker Prize, are published in 42 countries. He lives in Tasmania.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780525520023
ISBN-10: 0525520023
Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
Publication Date: April 3rd, 2018
Pages: 368
Language: English