No One You Know
“Heartbreaking and compelling. A thoroughly riveting literary thriller.”
Booklist, starred review
“Donna Tartt meets Alice Sebold in a beautifully compelling literary mystery.” Ebury UK
“An excellent, emotionally intelligent literary mystery.” London Daily Mail
About the Book
All her life Ellie Enderlin had been known as Lila’s sister. Until one day, without warning, the shape of their family changed forever. Twenty years ago, Lila, a top math student at Stanford, was murdered in a crime that was never solved. In the aftermath of her sister’s death, Ellie entrusted her most intimate feelings to a man who turned the story into a bestselling true crime book—a book that both devastated her family and identified one of Lila’s professors as the killer.
Decades later, two Americans meet in a remote village in Nicaragua. Ellie is now a professional coffee buyer, an inveterate traveler and incapable of trust. Peter is a ruined academic. And their meeting is not by chance. As rain beats down on the steaming rooftops of the village, Peter leaves Ellie with a gift—the notebook that Lila carried everywhere, a piece of evidence not found with her body. Stunned, Ellie will return home to San Francisco to explore the mysteries of Lila’s notebook, filled with mathematical equations, and begin a search that has been waiting for her all these years. It will lead her to a hundred-year-old mathematical puzzle, to a lover no one knew Lila had, to the motives and fate of the man who profited from their family’s anguish. A novel about the stories and lies that strangers, lovers and families tell—and the secrets we keep even from ourselves.
View foreign editions of No One You Know here.
Praise for No One You Know
“Heartbreaking and compelling…Richmond gracefully weaves in fascinating background material on the coffee culture and the field of mathematics as she thoughtfully explores family dynamics, the ripple effects of tragedy, and the importance of the stories we tell. Combine all that with perfect pacing and depth of insight, and you have a thoroughly riveting literary thriller.” Joanne Wilkinson, Booklist, Starred Review
“Richmond returns to San Francisco for another enjoyable blend of mystery and domestic fiction…Vivid descriptions and loving explanations of the city and intelligent forays into the sciences of coffee and mathematics enhance Richmond’s quietly captivating novel.” Publishers Weekly
“Michelle Richmond follows her compulsively readable fiction debut, The Year of Fog, with an equally addictive encore. Richmond takes a singular approach in No One You Know. The story is propelled by the mystery surrounding Lila’s death, the who- done-it and why. But the central narrative is more focused on emotional truths than on solving a crime.” Denver Post
“Thoughtful, involving, intricately constructed, and well written…Michelle Richmond never strikes a false note in No One You Know. It’s an intelligent, emotionally convincing tale about a family tragedy and the process of storytelling.” Boston Globe
“As complex and beautiful as a mathematical proof, this gripping, thought-provoking novel will keep you thinking long after the last page has been turned.” Darcy Jacobs, Family Circle
“An absorbing read made urgent by needing to know ‘whodunit’. But it is much more than that, being a tale of family, loss, love and misused trust. A clever, unusual read.” Sarah Broadhurst for The Bookseller, Britain, June 2009 debut of the month
“Michelle Richmond strikes the perfect balance of rural past and urban present in her fiction. As a native of Alabama (and now a San Francisco diehard), she takes a unique approach to her characters, at once delicate and deliberate, that’s full of city sensibilities and venturous diction. No One You Know, Richmond’s third novel, is a family saga set against the backdrop of San Francisco’s café culture and intelligentsia.” Laureen Mahler for Flavorpill
“NYT bestselling author Michelle Richmond is a bit of a chimera: her novels certainly have mainstream, commercial appeal but there’s often a dark core to them, along with influences that include Italo Calvino and Paul Auster. This gives them a lot more depth than the breezy covers might suggest. Her latest, No One You Know, is as much Borgesian mystery as it is the story of a complex relationship between a woman and her sibling.” Jeff VanderMeer (City of Saints and Madmen) for Amazon Editors’ Blog
“Richmond’s The Year of Fog was a bestseller, and her follow-up, a tale of love, loss and betrayal, is even more compulsively readable…A mesmerizer that delves into how little we sometimes know about the ones we love.” Caroline Leavitt for Dame Magazine
“This novel may seem at first to be genre fiction, but it is in fact literary fiction, the best sort. Richmond explores the devastating effects of grief and survivor guilt. She demonstrates how little, really, we know about even the people closest to us. ” Don Noble for Alabama Public Radio
“This novel hits all the right buttons—incredible olfactory descriptions of coffee, a trustworthy narrator, great villain, suspenseful plot, fear of math… guard it carefully. If you leave it lying around, someone will pick it up, start reading, and never put it down until the end.” Anita Garner for Alabama Writers’ Forum
“Richmond’ novels have a commercial mainstream appeal with literary depth…The authenticity and psychological accessibility of Richmond’s characters propels the plot, keeping the reader hooked to the last page.” Reba McMellon for The Mississippi Press
“An exciting psychological thriller.” Tina Magazine, Germany (Read an interview about this book in German here.)
A featured alternate selection of the Literary Guild, Doubleday Book Club, and the Mystery Guild. Also available in audio and as an e-book