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The Confession

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  1,226 ratings  ·  231 reviews
The sensational new novel from the million-copy bestselling author of The Miniaturist and The Muse.

One winter's afternoon on Hampstead Heath in 1980, Elise Morceau meets Constance Holden and quickly falls under her spell. Connie is bold and alluring, a successful writer whose novel is being turned into a major Hollywood film. Elise follows Connie to LA, a city of strange dreams a
Hardcover, 455 pages
Published September 24th 2019 by Picador (first published September 19th 2019)
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Average rating 4.14  · 
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 ·  1,226 ratings  ·  231 reviews

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Jessie Burton's latest offering is an intimate, intelligent exploration of the complexity of women's lives and the depth nature of relationships in a narrative that goes back and forth in time as the lives of the three central protagonists are laid bare. In the 1980s, a young, beautiful and naive Elise Morceau meets the much older Constance Holden on Hampstead Heath. She falls for the confident and charismatic Constance, a writer whose novel is being turned into a big Hollywood movie, and follow ...more
Emer (A Little Haze)
The Confession is such a powerful novel. Not only does it have an incredible plot and interesting story...
But the women.
These three main characters of Elise, Connie and Rose...
I am floored!
These women are so incredibly authentic. They are each so unique and so vital. Their stories are incredibly relatable to any reader. They speak to the spiritual autonomy of women. These women each in their own ways are on the same path, that of learning to trust yourself first and foremost.
I was glued to this. At over 400 pages, it's not quite a 'read it in one sitting' book, but I tore through it within a day. (Lovers of reading cliches will be delighted to hear I actually burned something I was cooking on the hob because I couldn't tear myself away from it.) The Confession is utterly engrossing; it took me on an emotional journey; at the end, I was sorry to leave its characters behind – but I also felt entirely satisfied with the endings they were given.

It's about two women: E
Louise Wilson
Sep 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Rose Simmons has a dead end job and a relationship that's floundering. She's never k own her mother, Elise Morceau s she had disappeared when Rose was just a baby. He father gives her a book and tells Rose that the author knew her mother and might have some knowledge about what had happened to her. Intrigued, Rose secures herself as a companion to the now famous author, Constance Holden. Rose changes her name to "Laura Brown". She is desperate to find answers and she hope that Constance will hel ...more
Abbie | ab_reads
Sep 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

Thank you so much @picadorbooks for my free copy of Jessie Burton’s The Confession! Once again I was spellbound by Burton’s masterful storytelling, this time focusing on books, what it means to be a mother and plenty of secrets.
Burton makes great use of the dual narrative in this one, jumping back and forth through time between the 80s and 2017/18. Usually I tend to prefer one narrative and find myself speeding through the other to get back to my favourite, but that wasn’t
Aug 06, 2019 marked it as to-read
how am i just hearing about this now? i feel very out of the loop, people!
Aug 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an absolutely superb book which is so well written. This story is told from the perspectives of Elise, Connie and Rosie and goes backwards and forwards fluidly from 1980-83 and 2017. Elise and Connie meet in London in 1980 and begin a relationship which is a very deep one. Elise believes that Connie ‘lured her in’ but thinks she doesn’t give her as much back as she gives to Connie. Connie can be silent and dismissive, perhaps partly due to age difference (Elise is much younger) and partl ...more
Anna Luce
★★★✰✰ 2.5 stars (rounded up to 3)

Although The Confession had a very promising start...I think I liked the book's cover more than its actual contents.

“It came smoothly to me, this loosening the threads of my own identity, weaving a new one. How had it become this easy to let go of myself, to pour words and fantasy into these gaping holes?”

The premise of The Confession is one that has been done time and again. A young-ish woman forms a bond with an older woman, the latter is often famous (she can be an actress like in The Seve/>start...I
Oct 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
In 1980 Elsie meets Constance on Hampstead Heath, she is a writer who is older and very charismatic, they begin a meaningful and intense relationship. When Constance takes them to L.A as her book is going to be turned into a film, Elsie feels like she has been abandoned, as Constance is too busy for her and expects her to wait on the sidelines.

The story jumps to 2017, Rosie has never known her mother,as she left when she was a child and was raised by her dad Matt. Matt gives her some
Emily B
Aug 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to netgalley, the author and the publishers for an advanced copy of this book.

I’ve read another book by the author and found this one very different. So don’t expect it to be similar.

I really enjoyed the characters, and felt my feelings towards them change all the time.
Yes some parts weren’t as interesting as others and it’s not a short book but the story is an interesting one without being too complicated.

The ending was a little frustrating as I like clear answers
♥ Jx PinkLady Reviews ♥
When I read a novel and it leaves me thinking about the themes, the characters and their life it's clear that the reading experience was totally worthwhile. I have been mulling over my thoughts and there is no doubt that this author writes a beautiful and compelling narrative.

The trajectory of the story toggles between the 1980s and three decades later where we see Rose drawn to the lady who influenced the life of her mother, Elise, a mother who mysteriously has not been any part of
Sep 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
This is the most emotionally engaging book I’ve read for a long time, chock full with strong female characters, not all particularly likeable, told in parallel timelines between the 1980s and the present day. I did like Rose and hoped throughout that she would come through and find resolution to her lifelong yearning for her mother. (view spoiler) ...more
Caroline Middleton
Aug 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
I feel really icky about this book.

The things I liked: the writing is absolutely gorgeous, very distinctive and evocative. Burton has a visual writing style that showcases her drama background and I loved how easy it was to read. She also writes very convincing characters - it felt real.

The things I didn’t: the characters are not likeable at all and the bad choices they made really triggered me because Burton is THAT GOOD with creating characters, but also, I wasn’t rooting for any
A cut above Burton’s two previous novels, The Miniaturist and The Muse, and my favorite book cover* of the year. I just wish that she / her publisher hadn’t tried to stick to the pattern of a two-word title starting with ‘The’, as this title feels meaninglessly generic. Yes, there are a couple of important confessions in the book – one is about three-quarters of the way through, when Rose Simmons admits that she’s been masquerading as Laura Brown, an experienced personal assistant, to gain access to Constance H ...more
Anna Maria Boland
This book! Read it. Read everything Jessie Burton writes.
This book is beautiful and heartbreaking and full of hope. But it’s the writing that makes this story amazing. I don’t know how Jessie Burton does it, but in every book her writing fits exactly the story and the characters. I was reading this book very slowly just to be able to enjoy it longer. I want to bath in her writing, I want to learn how to write like this. I want to keep reading Jessie Burton’s stories and let her writing fil
Carol -  Reading Writing and Riesling

My View:
I finished reading this last night – OMG!!!

This is such a sublime read full of emotional intelligence and elegant prose – I just wanted to highlight paragraphs and paragraphs – because of the skilled use of language AND because of the many astute revelations about life’s journey.

The narrative is engaging; a bit of mystery, a lot of coming of age, of learning to love oneself and live in the moment not the future, about acceptance, family, identity… this book has so much to
Elle (theartfulelle)
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Jessie Burton is quickly becoming a go-to author of mine. Having read and loved both The Muse, and The Miniaturist, I really didn’t know what to expect from The Confession. It did not disappoint! There is something wonderful about Burton’s writing that quickly draws you in, and once you are in, you are hooked!

Starting in the early 1980’s we meet Elsie Morceau as she comes spellbound by the mysterious and alluring Constance Holden. Connie is a successful writer and Elsie finds herself
Pauliina (The Bookaholic Dreamer)
Dear glorious, eternally powerful ARC Gods, I pray thee to descend an ARC of The Confession upon me. I would forever cherish it, and no one loved the Miniaturist more than I. I would tattoo this bunny on my body if you would rather have a serious token of my devotion.

Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum
The Confession by Jessie Burton is a dual narrative story about three women, Elise, Constance and Rose. Elise and Constance are lovers in the 1980s and in the present day, Rose seeks answers about her mother Elise, who left when she was a baby.

Constance is a successful author, and the reader is given an insight into her career during the 1980s and her life as a reclusive writer in the present day. Rose devises a ruse to meet Constance and drill her for answers about her mother.

The Confession is m/>The
I requested this ARC from Netgalley because I had read the author's two previous adult novels - The Miniaturist (which I enjoyed) and The Muse (which I loved).

Like her previous novels, this is written skilfully, but in a way that seems effortless. Burton's prose is often beautiful and her observations are spot-on. Themes such as family, friendship, decisions, mistakes, consequences and responsibility are handled well, with sympathy and understanding.

The pacing is generall
From BBC radio 4 Extra:
Episode 1 of 2

The new novel by Jessie Burton, the bestselling author of The Miniaturist and The Muse.

Rose Simmons is adrift in her mid-30s and still trying to decide what to do with her life. Her own mother disappeared when she was a baby and she's never known the truth of what happened to her.

When she learns that the last person to see her was Constance Holden, a reclusive novelist who withdrew from public life at the peak of her
Oct 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Once more Burton brings us a story alternating between different years.

Unfortunately, I didn’t find this one as good as ‘The Muse’. Jessie Burton is an accomplished story-teller, but I think something was amiss in this one.

Was it maybe Rosie’s voice which was not compelling enough? Or maybe whimsical and difficult Elise, whom I didn’t warm up to? Whatever it was, I couldn’t connect as well to this story as I did with ‘The Muse’.

That said, I’m nevertheless stil
Aug 27, 2019 marked it as to-read
Oh. My. God. How did I not know this is coming out next month?! I loved The Muse and this basically sounds like its gonna be at least equally amazing I can‘t wait!!
Linda Kelly
Oct 25, 2019 rated it liked it
Odd one this. Didn't enjoy it much, didn't like most of the characters and the so called confession was just, well, meh! Yet I wanted to read it to the end. 😳 Very odd.
Jack (That English Guy who Reads)
I've eagerly awaited Burton's third novel since the moment I finished The Muse, back when that was published in 2016. It is safe to say that The Confession does not disappoint.

Burton reaches a new literary height here, with writing that is so beautifully crafted and language which drips in vivid imagery and rich, lucid detail. From the very first page Burton's writing is as familiar and as warming as an open fire on a winter's evening.

The Confession is very much a novel a
Helen White
Aug 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Rose has been looking for her missing mother all her life. Her life feels incomplete or permanently on hold. When her father gives her a clue - the name of an author who was the last person to see her mother she decides to insert herself in this authors life to find traces of her mother.

Elise is a young woman in live with Connie a successful author. She will follow Connie anywhere - even to L.A when Connie's book becomes a Hollywood film. Life starts to unravel though for Elise and her lack of
Ruth Brookes
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Morally questionable, complex, flawed characters and a story of selfhood, female autonomy, desire, loss and finding the truth of oneself. Richly descriptive, perceptive & full of ambiguity, this is very much a Jessie Burton novel. I didn’t completely love it, but there were points which really resonated & left me with lots to ponder. Beautiful writing.
Aug 04, 2019 marked it as to-read
i still can't stop thinking about The Muse and it's been more than a year since i read it. You don't even know how excited i'm for this, it looks so good and i can't believe i'm only now finding out that this is coming out THIS SOON.
Oct 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Novel set in Hollywood and Hampstead

A novel by Jessie Burton is always a thing of pleasure, unusual story telling coupled with skilful writing. The Confession is about many things, primarily it is about what it means to grow up without a mother’s figure to guide and offer unconditional love.

Back in 1980s Hampstead, Elise and Connie are embarking on a lesbian relationship, a time when it was not easy
Oct 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2019
As I wasn't a huge fan of Jessie Burton's last novel The Muse, I did not have high hopes for The Confession - and I could not have been more wrong. It's an intimate, intelligent and compelling novel that explores the lives of several different women. It takes place across two timelines - the early 1980s in London, LA and New York, and 2017-18 in London. The characters are well-drawn, believable and tender - Connie, in particular, is brought to life very well, I had visions of Eileen Atkins playi ...more
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Jessie Burton studied at Oxford University and the Central School of Speech and Drama, where she appeared in productions of The House of Bernarda Alba, Othello, Play and Macbeth. In April 2013 her first novel, The Miniaturist, was sold at an 11-publisher auction at the London Book Fair, and went on to sell in 29 other countries around the world. It was published by Picador in the UK and Holland in ...more
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