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A Good Man

3.12  ·  Rating details ·  1,208 ratings  ·  303 reviews
Thomas Martin was a devoted family man who had all the trappings of an enviable life: a beautiful wife and daughter, a well-appointed home on Long Island's north shore, a job at a prestigious Manhattan advertising firm. He was also a devoted son and brother, shielding the women in his orbit from the everyday brutalities of the world.

But what happens when Thomas's fragile e
Paperback, 224 pages
Published January 14th 2020 by Penguin Books
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Average rating 3.12  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,208 ratings  ·  303 reviews

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Katie B
3.5 stars

This one belongs in the "Different, but I kinda liked it" category. It's one of the few books I would say might be even better if I read it for a second time. Most likely there is stuff there I didn't pick up on the first time. But with so many books on my to be read list will I ever get around to doing a reread? Probably not.

Thomas Martin is a good man. Or is he? It appears he has a good life with a wife and a daughter, a nice home on Long Island, and a job working at a prestigious adv
Liz Barnsley
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I started “A Good Man” thinking I’ll read a couple of chapters, get a feel for the story, then suddenly, almost without blinking it seemed, I finished it. I fell into Thomas Martin’s story and followed it with an ever growing sense of unease, that off kilter sense that tells you it’s going to hurt. Indeed I think the very last sentence of this novel will haunt me for the foreseeable future, I had tears in my eyes as I read it.

The intelligence of this book comes in its nuances, in a lot of ways i
Erin (from Long Island, NY)
Feb 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
There are certain books that when it comes time to rate them, I get a little confused about my own criteria! This was a very well written character study- not necessarily a “thriller,” maybe more of a drama. But did it give me the creeps? Was there an underlying darkness echoing throughout? Absolutely! Looking back, did “enough” happen? Was it original & entirely memorable? Honestly, I don’t know.. But my bottom line here is that I picked up this book & didn’t put it down. 7 hours went by in the ...more
Jan 06, 2020 rated it liked it
Thomas is a man with a good life. This is his story about how things went wrong.

Told from Thomas's point of view. He recalls the early days with his wife, his family life, and his work life. While everything seems ordinary, and even a bit dull in Thomas's life, there is an underlying darkness. As Thomas tells his story, it's clear that he's not the good man he claims to be.

This book reminds me of Looker by Laura Sims, but from a male POV. A slow-paced psychological drama. While this novel has se
Emily B
Oct 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to netgalley, the author and the publishers for an advanced copy of this book.

I read this in about two sittings which shows I found it pretty fluid and easy to read. It was an interesting character study particularly as I do enjoy an unreliable narrator. I think as a narrator Thomas could have looked slightly deeper into his past, his actions and feelings and how all these things combined to lead to the horrifying conclusion. However I guess that this is exactly what the intended reade
Gloria Zak
Nov 30, 2019 rated it did not like it
Received this book through Goodreads giveaway program.

I didn’t find anything to like in this book. Overly descriptive throughout the book, sometimes less is the better path. The book seemed to ebb and flow with no consistency in storytelling. One dysfunctional family to another dysfunctional family- were there no normal people in this author’s vision? No character that was likable, therefore interest waned for me pretty quickly.

The gist of the story has great possibilities; it just needs an over
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A profoundly disturbing and deeply unsettling story of a man struggling to reconcile himself with the horrifying act he has committed. Katz deftly embodies her narrator, giving voice to his self-serving recreation of the past and presenting him as he sees himself: a provider, a protector, a patriarch. Richly drawn and laced through with dread, this bold novel is an unflinching examination of what it means to be a man, and how easily a man can become a monster.
Mar 19, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: audio, overdrive
A delusional man sinks further into madness. This book manages to be both twisted and boring at the same time.

I’m so confused. So utterly confused by this.

I want to say I liked it but there’s something about it that I found incredibly enraging.
That was one of the worst books I have read in a long time. I can appreciate the style, the unreliable narrator but the story was overly depressing and boring. For such a short book it took me a long time to get through it, the monotony of day to day way excruciating. Skip it
My thanks to Penguin Random House U.K./William Heinemann for an eARC via NetGalley of ‘A Good Man’ by Ani Katz in exchange for an honest review.

‘Our lives were good – great, even. We were happy and secure. We had everything we needed. There was no way for anyone to know – least of all me – that it would all end the way it did.’ This statement by narrator, Thomas Martin, in the opening chapter is one of a number of early indicators that before its closing pages something monumental will occur.

Alyssia Cooke
Warning: If you plan to read/watch Twilight steer clear. Full explanation below, but it's worth noting that the author has been uncouth enough to write in full spoilers for another author's series here.

Otherwise. Eh, good but not superb. A Good Man is a tale told from an undeniably unreliable narrator; Thomas thinks he is a good man and told from his perspective, there is much to back this up. Except there are some inconsistencies which even he can't cover up from his own mind. Looking back on t
Britta Böhler
Fast-paced and entertaining.
Steve Tannuzzo
May 17, 2020 rated it it was ok
I really wanted to like this book. It had many of the elements that I appreciate in a good book: solid writing; first-person narrative; unreliable narrator; ominous opening pages; story told in flashback building toward a powerful climax. Unfortunately for the reader, A Good Man does not live up to the sum of its parts.

This is a story of toxic masculinity that moves along a predictable timeline to the point where your first guess at how it ends — after reading just the first three pages — is pro
Sid Nuncius
I’m afraid I struggled with A Good Man. It’s a bold idea and Ani Katz certainly writes well, but I got very bogged down in a slow, oppressive narrative.

The book is narrated in the first person by Thomas, a man with an apparently idyllic family life with his wife and daughter and a successful career. We can tell that something dreadful is looming, but it takes a very long time indeed for anything approaching an event to occur. Thomas’s narration is plainly unreliable – and very well done, to be f
Jan 30, 2020 rated it did not like it
Books like this are why I borrow books from the Library instead of buying them. This was a waste of money and my time. Moving on...
Jane Woods
Apr 10, 2020 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Superb setting! Eerie story, very foreboding! Love the unreliable narrator - wow!
Donna Hines
If you've never dealt with toxicity, masks, false persona's, personality trait disordered individuals; count yourself one lucky person.
This is not the case here with Thomas the doting, hard working, vicarious husband and father who feels he's a 'good man' but yet suffers from paranoia and anxiety from his past.
You see his past is quite dark, disturbed, and darn right dangerous!
What those closest don't see is the rest of this hidden iceberg of a man. The part he chooses to keep hidden at all cost
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book of which you have to read every word to get the whole effect. How many Thomas Martins do we know? A great number. Fine, upstanding men, well employed, good husbands and fathers, until they aren't. We really get to know, and never get to know, Thomas. This could be read in tandem with Unraveling Oliver, another book about a toxic man and his relationships. Recommended reading.
Jan 19, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020
2.5 stars. Quick overly simplified synopsis: Thomas Martin was a man with a good job who always tried to take good care of the women in his life; his wife, daughter, mother, and sisters. When an event happens that rocks his ego, he turns into a monster.

What is interesting about this novel is that it is written in 1st person after the event as Thomas looks back at his life attempting to see where things went wrong. He is obviously an unreliable narrator, and the reader can see his grip on reality
Jan 13, 2020 rated it did not like it
An over stylized and oppressive narrative from a pretentious and unreliable narrator. I struggled to get into this book and forced myself through it as I was given an advanced copy to review. The narrator believes he is a good man, as the title suggests, by 'protecting' all the women in his life. In actuality *SPOILER*, he's just a piece of shit. I am racking my brain trying to find something I enjoyed about this book and there is simply nothing. Unbelievable and unlikable characters; the narrat ...more
Marie Courtemanche
Jan 26, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sucked
What a terrible story. I cannot believe that I wasted my weekend waiting for this book to get better only to see it waste away into utter nonsense.
Feb 17, 2020 rated it liked it
A Good Man
Ani Katz

3 Stars

I struggled to really like A Good Man, but in the end it was just so dark that I couldn’t. It’s a quick read and I thought the writing was excellent. I didn’t find it all to be the “slow, oppressive narrative” that at least one other reviewer describes; in fact, I moved through it very quickly. But the story is just so dark and depressing that I couldn’t really love it. There weren’t even any likeable characters in the book; they were all flawed and dysfunctional bey
Octavia (ReadsWithDogs)
"No? I repeated, incredulous. Why not?

I'm not doing that, he said slowly. It's racist.

How is it racist?

It implies poverty is dangerous, he replied, a nasty, impatient edge creeping into his voice. That poor people are dangerous. And that's an extremely racist idea.

We can make the girl black, I said. Or Latina, or whatever.

That doesn't matter, Brian snapped. It's still racist.

It's not racist! I said. It's just telling a story. A good one, I might add. This is the best idea we've had so far, and I
Aug 24, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My thanks to NetGalley and publisher Random House UK, Cornerstone, for the ARC.

This is a story of a Good Man - Martin - he adores his wife Miriam and their daughter. He has a good job in Manhattan at an advertising firm; consistently promoted and able to provide for his family - private school for his daughter and continuing provision for his two sisters and ailing mother. He does what is right - he has responsibilities.
That's the face of it - underneath there are currents of concern, discontent
Nov 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
A Good Man is told from the perspective of Thomas Martin. He is by all outward appearances, a good man who works diligently to provide his family with everything they need. He is a husband, father, son, and brother, who has a solid career and a nice house on Long Island. Why then is he telling a story about what went wrong in his perfect life? Is Thomas a reliable narrator, or is his version of the truth flawed?
Seeing everything that happened through his eyes, provides a unique window into the t

This was a big time Psychological read, holy hell this was a good book. This really took me by surprise. Thomas's character was like no other, I really didn't know what to believe. This was a very short book, so I quickly devoured it in a few hours.
On the outside and to Thomas, he has the most perfect life. He makes great money, has a loving wife and a perfect child. But, things may not be exactly as Thomas believes they are. This was an extremely dark and disturbing read at times but it's
Oct 21, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was advertised as a work of psychological suspense and so, naturally, I expected yet another one of those female authored thrillers. But then again the title does tell you to expect a male protagonist. So at any rate, this wasn’t a thriller, to my great delight this was actually a work of literary fiction, dark psychological fiction to be specific. The title is apt, this is a story of a man determined to be good, determined to live up to a traditional definition of a good man, a protector, ...more
Thomas Mann was raised in an abusive household so he now does everything he can to be a good man and a loving husband and father. But, is the story he's telling us the truth? This was an exploration of what it means to be a man in modern society and how people's views of themselves are not necessarily the way they really are. Interesting tale.
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