Oxford Thesis Spine
One, in London, said, “He exploited people who were sweet-natured.” A colleague at William Morrow told friends, “There’s this guy in my office who’s got a ‘Talented Mr. Every spring, he read applications from students who, having been accepted by Oxford to pursue a doctorate in English, hoped to be attached to New College during their studies.Ripley’ thing going on.” In 2013, Sophie Hannah, the esteemed British crime-fiction writer, whose work includes the sanctioned continuation of Agatha Christie’s series of detective novels, was one of Mallory’s authors; she came to distrust accounts that he had given about being gravely ill. A decade or so ago, Raine read an application from Dan Mallory, which described a proposed thesis on homoeroticism in Patricia Highsmith’s fiction.I recently called a senior editor at a New York publishing company to discuss the experience of working with Mallory. Unusually, the application included an extended personal statement.Raine, telling me about the essay during a phone conversation a few months ago, called it an astonishing piece of writing that described almost unbearable family suffering.
The former colleague said that Mallory was “clever and careful” in his “ruthless” deceptions: “If there was something that he wanted and there was a way he could position himself to get it, he would.He announced that he was going “off script” to share something personal—for what Scott understood to be the first time.Mallory said that once, in order to alleviate depression, he had undergone electroconvulsive therapy, three times a week, for one or two months.Like “Gone Girl,” by Gillian Flynn (2012), and “The Girl on the Train,” by Paula Hawkins (2015), each of which has sold millions of copies, Mallory’s novel, published in January, 2018, features an unreliable first-person female narrator, an apparent murder, and a possible psychopath.Mallory sold the novel in a two-book, two-million-dollar deal.Most people have jazzed up an anecdote, and it is a novelist’s job to manipulate an audience. He said that, while he was working at an imprint of the publisher Little, Brown, in London, between 20, “The Cuckoo’s Calling,” a thriller submitted pseudonymously by J. “Money and power were important to him,” a former publishing colleague told me.“But so was drama, and securing people’s sympathies.”In 2001, Jeffrey Archer, the British novelist, began a two-year prison sentence for perjury and perverting the course of justice.He dedicated it to a man he has described as an ex-boyfriend, and secured a blurb from Stephen King: “One of those rare books that really is unputdownable.” Mallory was profiled in the best-seller list at No.1—the first time in twelve years that a début novel had done so.It was almost like an outsider looking in on his own success.”Mallory and Scott later appeared at a festival event that took the form of a lighthearted debate between two teams.The audience was rowdy; Scott recalled that, when it was Mallory’s turn to speak, he flipped the room’s mood.