New York Times Bestselling Author

Book Review: Suspense

Posted on May 31, 2017 |

Lies She Told by Cate Holahan


Suspense > Mystery

“I don’t invent my characters. I steal them from my surroundings. To be a writer is to be a thief. Every day I rob myself blind.”

 These are the words of the protagonist of the novel, Liza, and indeed, the book deftly blurs the lines between what it means to be an author—what is real and what is fiction in the life of a fiction writer.

 Liza is a thriller writer, although a few times she calls herself a romantic suspense writer. I’ve read romantic suspense, and the novel within the novel is not in a romantic suspense book. In the book that Liza is writing, new mother Beth is depressed because she discovers her husband is having an affair. Beth has some sex, but it’s not romantic. Romantic suspense heroines are plucky and don’t weep all the time feeling sorry for themselves.

 For that reason, I liked the main storyline with Liza more—she was at least working at her career and trying to have a baby despite reproductive barriers. I definitely identified with going to writing conferences and being a midlist writer. Anyone who has been published or has seriously worked toward publication will also identify.

 Liza is writing her book at the same time she’s trying to get pregnant from her husband, who has been distracted by the disappearance of his good friend and law partner, Nick. The mystery of what happened to Nick is compelling, although I didn’t buy the resolution one hundred percent. Even granting the leeway you have to give fiction, it was a stretch.

 Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to review this book.


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