[I received a copy of this novel by its Canadian publisher Penguin Random House Canada. This does not affect my opinion on the book.]
If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll notice that I don’t review a lot of murder mysteries or thrillers. To be honest, I’m too much of a scaredy cat to pick them up most of the time, but when I read the synopsis of The Truth and Other Lies by Sascha Arango, I was so intrigued that I knew I’d have to give it a shot. Luckily for me, it’s not as horror-driven as I’d feared, and I ended up loving the novel. So, without further ado, here are 5 reasons why you should add this to your TBR pile ASAP.
1. The Truth and Other Lies is Sascha Arango’s first novel, but according to his author bio he’s won prizes “for his work on the long-running detective series Tatort.”
Arango’s experience in writing detective stories really shows in The Truth in Other Lies. I’ll admit that I’m not the most well-read in this regard, but the way that the book unravels really hit a spot for me.
2. It’s a bona-fide page turner.
Once I started reading this book, there was absolutely no putting it down until I was finished. The characters, specifically Henry Hayden, suck you right into the narrative. Even though it’s not written in first person, Arango has a way of getting the reader inside Hayden’s head and it’s absolutely terrifying and thrilling at the same time. What’s Hayden going to do next? How is everything going to end? This is an “all-nighter read” if I’ve ever seen one.
3. The main character is a writer. Or so it seems…
I’ve talked about my fascination with ghost writing on this blog before, so it should come as no surprise that this aspect of the book really appealed to me. You see, Henry Hayden is an acclaimed and beloved writer, but his biggest secret is that he hasn’t written a single word. With a new book deadline looming, Hayden’s ghostwriter becomes tangled up in the “lies, truths, and half-truths” fabricated by Hayden, creating an extra dimension of suspense to this already tense novel.
4. It’s The Talented Mr. Ripley-esque in the best way possible.
I’m not the only one who draws the Patricia Highsmith comparison here, but it’s so apt that I can’t help making it. Hayden is so charming on the outside, but when readers get to peek into his mind, they discover something else altogether. It’s kind of terrifying how normal people can look on the outside, yet have such intense thoughts underneath the surface. This character study alone makes this book worth reading.
5. It’s the perfect book club read.
The second I finished the book I whispered to myself, “I need to talk to someone about this.” This would make a great book club read because of how everything unfolds. For fear of giving anything away, I’ll just say this: if you’ve finished the book, let’s talk.
Verdict: I loved reading this book. It’s a quick read but it’s jam-packed with action. It’s part “crime thriller” (quotations because even a wimp like me could handle it) part family drama. As a reader, I really couldn’t ask for anything more.
Have you read The Truth and Other Lies? Are you a fan of crime thrillers?