The Apostle Killer (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

I picked the ARC up on a whim because I was looking for something out of the ordinary to read. Theological fiction is also a genre I love. The title and cover intrigued me, as did the idea of the Passion as a police procedural. I was heading away on a short sabbatical, intending to work on my own writing. Instead, I spent almost the entire three days reading The Apostle Killer, underlining many of Beard's wonderful phrases and ideas, envious I hadn't come up with this myself. The book is brilliant; I would love to use it for a book study at the church I attend. Beard's writing is clear, crisp, and deep; the plot is just intricate enough without being a messy knot--Beard leads the reader nicely through to an apt ending, with well-drawn characters you care about, especially Gallio. It reminds me of a combination of Bulgakov's The Master and Margarita and Moore's Lamb. Another one I can't wait to put into customers' hands.

— Christine H.


A wildly inventive, darkly suspenseful novel that pits Christ’s “Passion as police procedural” (The Guardian).

Set in a hazy Middle East that seems at once ancient and modern, The Apostle Killer features Gallio, an aging, hardboiled investigator who has one last chance to save his career: He’s got to prove Christ’s resurrection was a hoax.

To uncover the conspiracy behind the so-called resurrection, Gallio figures all he needs is for one of the apostles to crack. The only problem is that one by one, the apostles keep dying—and in ever more grotesque ways—just before Gallio gets to them.

Racing to save both his case and the witnesses he needs to solve it, Gallio begins to suspect he’s become the unwitting pawn in the plot to kill the apostles . . . but who’s behind it? And to what end? As Gallio realizes even his own superiors are not to be trusted, The Apostle Killer transforms from a dazzling literary experiment into a moving, haunting work of art.

About the Author

Richard Beard is the author of six novels, including X20, Damascus (a New York Times Notable Book), The Cartoonist, Dry Bones, and Lazarus is Dead, and three works of non-fiction. He has been shortlisted for the BBC National Short Story Award and long-listed for the Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award. He lives in London.

Praise For…

A Guardian and Observer Best Book of the Year

Shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize

“Darkly mysterious...A smart, sly, unpredictable novel.”—The Wall Street Journal

“Beard’s sharp humor drives this mind-bending, time-compressing tale.”—Publishers Weekly

“Brilliantly original and absurdly compelling . . . A book you’ll read in one, frantic gasp.” —Alex Preston, Observer (Best Books of the Year)

“Remarkable . . . Richly hilarious . . . confident and enchanting.” —Philip Hensher, Guardian
“Beard is one of those rare writers whose novels are at once radically inventive and brilliantly entertaining . . . Mysterious and affecting. Set in a Roman world that boasts air travel and motivational speakers giving talks in luxury hotels, it is as joyously original as it is a page-turner to read.” —The Daily Mail

“It is a darkly funny, virtuoso performance . . . So cleverly done it almost winks at the reader.” —Phil Baker, Sunday Times
Product Details
ISBN: 9781612195797
ISBN-10: 1612195792
Publisher: Melville House
Publication Date: September 20th, 2016
Pages: 352
Language: English