The Exhibitionist

Listen to a sample

What to expect

** LONGLISTED FOR THE WOMEN’S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2022 **

‘It takes the most ferocious intelligence, skill, and a deep reservoir of sadness to write a novel as funny as this. I adored it’ – Meg Mason, author of Sorrow & Bliss

A devastating treat of a novel: funny, furious, dark and delicious’ – Sarah Waters, author of Fingersmith

Meet the Hanrahan family, gathering for a momentous weekend as famous artist and notorious egoist Ray Hanrahan prepares for a new exhibition of his art – the first in many decades – and one he is sure will burnish his reputation for good.

His three children will be there: beautiful Leah, always her father’s biggest champion; sensitive Patrick, who has finally decided to strike out on his own; and insecure Jess, the youngest, who has her own momentous decision to make . . .

And what of Lucia, Ray’s steadfast and selfless wife? She is an artist, too, but has always had to put her roles as wife and mother first. What will happen if she decides to change? For Lucia is hiding secrets of her own, and as the weekend unfolds and the exhibition approaches, she must finally make a choice.

The longer the marriage, the harder truth becomes . . .

The Exhibitionist is the extraordinary fifth novel from Charlotte Mendelson, a dazzling exploration of art, sacrifice, toxic family politics, queer desire, and personal freedom.

‘Delicious, heartbreaking . . . Fabulously written and utterly compelling’ – Marian Keyes, author of Grown-Ups

Critics Review

  • In The Exhibitionist Mendelson brings a forensic eye to family dynamics, laying bare the agonies of rage, frustration and longing that lie just beneath the surface of domestic life. The result is a devastating treat of a novel: funny, furious, dark and delicious

    Sarah Waters, bestselling author of Fingersmith
  • It takes the most ferocious intelligence, skill, and a deep reservoir of sadness to write a novel as funny as this. I adored it

    Meg Mason, bestselling author of Sorrow & Bliss
  • A delicious, heartbreaking family snapshot about thwarted ambition, misplaced loyalty and good and bad love. Secrets abound. Fabulously written and utterly compelling

    Marian Keyes, bestselling author of Grown-Ups
  • Mendelson is a master at family drama, and plots don’t get much more dramatic than this . . . Exhilarating

    The Times
  • Soul-scouringly good

    Nigella Lawson
  • Sex, desire, deep-seated marital resentment, monstrous artists, determined wives: it’s a delicious, piquant comedy of manners, and Mendelson’s serrated prose will have you wincing at every word

    Daily Mail

More from the same

Subscribe to our newsletter

Sign up to get tailored content recommendations, product updates and info on new releases. Your data is your own: we commit to protect your data and respect your privacy.