Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Review: Circles and circles of Twisted Torture...

Minature HouseImage by randomdepth via Flickr
The Truth-Teller's Lie

By Sophie Hannah

Is there a genre for literary weird? Let's see what the police said: "Circles within circles, that's what it is. We're chasing our tails! Look at that big, black now resembled a morbidly obese spider--a huge black mass of lines, arrows, circles, loops. The shape of chaos." (p. 319)

The police are referring to the attempted murder case of Robert Haworth (who later did die). If you wants twists and turns and surprises in your psychological suspense novels, it is safe to say, you will thoroughly enjoy Hannah's latest mystery.

The Truth-Teller's Lie: A Novel previously published as Hurting DistanceI was happily reading the author's superb writing that made you even feel "on the edge" as you followed first the story provided by Naomi Jenkins, who is having an affair with Robert Haworth. She is a professional artist, who creates sundials. 

Other than messages, she is able to see her lover only once a week for a few hours--but she has been doing so for a year. So when he doesn't show up, she goes to the police. Well, she does that, afterwards--after she had gone to his house, looked into a first-floor window, saw something, and then started to run away. She is stopped, however, by Robert's wife, who looks very professional and not a bit like how her lover described his wife.

Robert's wife is also an artist, but has not worked for a long time. She used to create miniature houses that duplicated her clients home. That was before she had a breakdown, some say due to overwork...

The investigation into the disappearance and later attempted murder case is told by Detective Sergeant Charlie Zailer. Zailer is in love with her partner who at one point hurt her badly, so in order to maintain her image around the men with whom she worked and supervised, she had been casually mentioning she was dating Graham and that the relationship was going quite well. Of course, she admitted to her sister than she had made up the story--actually it was good that she had told her, given the later situation...

Naomi Jenkins was a driven woman; she knew something had happened to Robert, but the police didn't seem to take her seriously, or were not acting fast enough for her. Either way, she decided to make it harder for the police to ignore her, by going back to tell them a different story. No, Robert was not her lover, he had raped her and when she recently saw and met him, she found out who he was and was now reporting him as her rapist. To prove that she was now telling the truth, she referred the police to a web site for rape survivors and directed them to her letter. Now, it won't give anything away to explain that she was indeed raped years ago, only just not by Robert. She felt her lie was justified and she would explain later.

Because that lie did achieve what she wanted; the police found Robert near death, having been beaten badly. In essence, then Naomi had saved his life by the lie.

The problem was, that when Charlie had been reading the letters on the rape survivor site, she accidentally found another individual who told the same story as Naomi...and then another one, and another one...

If you figure out how this book ends, please write to me and tell me how you arrived at it! This ending floored me. I don't think I've ever read such a successfully created psychological suspense novel--in many ways, the coincidental circles were almost too much to accept, yet once you got past the personal reaction, you could see how logically, the entire web could be created. The Amazing thing? All three female main characters had been intimate with the same man... The "How" will blow you away!

I didn't like the ending but that cannot distract from the fantastically plotted suspense! I think you really would have to read this to understand. You decide; it's easily a 5+ for so many reasons...

Book Received Via
Amazon Vine


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