Hello, all! It’s time for another review–this time for the newly released adult thriller, THE TRUTH AND OTHER LIES. I (Sasha) must admit this book was complex, dark, and quite different from your typical read. I had the ARC sitting on my shelf and knew I wanted to read more adult thrillers after I finished BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP earlier this month. Here’s the synopsis provided by Goodreads:
Dark, witty, and suspenseful, this literary crime thriller reminiscent of The Dinner and The Silent Wife follows a famous author whose wife—the brains behind his success—meets an untimely death, leaving him to deal with the consequences.
For most of Henry’s life, it hasn’t been a problem. But when his hidden-in-plain-sight mistress becomes pregnant and his carefully constructed facade is about to crumble, he tries to find a permanent solution, only to make a terrible mistake.
Now not only are the police after Henry, but his past—which he has painstakingly kept hidden—threatens to catch up with him as well. Henry is an ingenious man and he works out an ingenious plan. He weaves lies, truths, and half-truths into a story that might help him survive. But bit by bit the noose still tightens.
Smart, sardonic, and compulsively readable, here is the story of a man whose cunning allows him to evade the consequences of his every action, even when he’s standing on the edge of the abyss.
Okay, so to start off, I have to admit this wasn’t my favourite read, nor do I think it’s the most amazing thriller ever. However, it was still a good one! I found the premise to be very intriguing. I like how it’s about the main character being a fraud author (his wife is the one writing his bestselling novels), however the MC was very much an unlikable character, as are all the other characters in the novel.
Henry Hayden is a man with many secrets, lies, and deceits. And I didn’t like him one bit. Not that he’s badly written–the way his character is written has a purpose–however, I just couldn’t get behind him, his motives, or his emotions. He was strange, acted weird, and even when things seemed strange to me, they weren’t at all strange to him.
I liked the cover of this novel. It has a lot of symbolism. A wall, seemingly perfect, pristine, and well-painted on the outside–just like Henry–has its darkness within. Once the wall is deconstructed, and thus, the character has come to his demise, the truths hidden beneath must be revealed. Therefore, I really like what the cover has to offer, and also the title. Very unique, very promising, and it has a lot to do with the novel and the main character’s past.
Okay, now though I wasn’t the biggest fan of this book overall (I found myself quite confused from time to time) I really enjoyed one character and one character only: Martha. Henry’s wife. Wow, she was so complex (and also weird), but seriously, so complex. Though she’s barely in the novel (as the story is about how she dies and the MC must figure out a way to finish the novel while the police are after him), I find her to be very intriguing and interesting. I need to learn more about Martha and if she really was just a novelist with no aspirations. Was she indeed more than that?
This book also broke the fourth wall many times. I’ve only ever read one book that broke the fourth wall (Percy Jackson) and that was only in the beginning of the first book. Though this book is technically third person, many times there would be reflective quotes that integrated the reader as “we”, as if there was a sort of watchful eye over the whole novel and its events.
Here are a few quotes I absolutely loved from the novel:
- “The liars among us will know that every lie must contain a certain amount of truth if it’s to be convincing. A dash of truth is often enough, but it’s indispensable, like the olive in the martini.”
- “Betrayal is a riddle we want to solve.”
- “Evil is born innocently. It grows up, seeks shape and form, and begins its work playfully.”
- “Could any death be more tragic and at the same time more unjust than that inflicted by the cold hand of chance?”
- “Fear is a truth drug: it speaks even with its mouth shut.”
- “Can you guess the end?”
And that’s all for my review! I wasn’t a huge fan of the ending, but overall this was still an intriguing, well-written literary crime thriller, and I’m hoping to read more like this one (and hopefully I’ll end up enjoying them more!) such as The Dinner and The Silent Wife.
I rated this book 3.5/5 stars.