Lit Life
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Lit Life


Why Do Writers Use Unreliable Narrators?

The device works brilliantly when it succeeds. But it can bring a book down when it doesn’t

Unreliable narration — the use of a storyteller we can’t fully trust — helps to explain the appeal of books as different as Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw, Scott Turow’s Presumed



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Janice Harayda

Critic, novelist, award-winning journalist. Former book editor of the Plain Dealer and book columnist for Glamour. Words in NYT, WSJ, and other major media.