Book Review: Lies by T.M. Logan

Lies by T.M. Logan
My rating: 🌟🌟🌟  (3 stars)
Publisher: St Martin's Press (September 2018)

This was quite the page turner and has so many lies going on by so many characters that I found the one character who wasn't lying, was a bit pale in comparison.

I don't want to give away the major twists here but I can say that I found two of the main characters lying to be so extreme in their personalities and plight, that they verged into caricatures. Perhaps for me it was that even before their plot and involvement were revealed, they hadn't been rendered in such a remote and removed way that neither ever felt real. This is the saving grace of the compulsive page turner but in the final analysis, it left me a bit unsatisfied.

I also found that instead of feeling terribly sorry for our narrator, Joe, I was a bit annoyed by his not catching on to things sooner and being so easily led. In fairness, I allowed for some of it because it did make sense that one wants to believe the person closest to them but the extent to which this was taken with Joe was too far for me. There's a line between wide-eyed sap and willful fool turned tool. Joe's on the wrong side of that line for much of this story. I felt for him but I also disliked him for falling for so much and it felt to me that per the writing, I should root for and like him. On balance, he was the most likable of all but that's, to me, down to a lack of options by default not because it was earned.

I very much liked the takes on society's current relationship with social media and the technology used (and misused) to various ends (intended and unintended) that was covered here. I actually think that's where the story's overall strength really exists. I found that the things I most highlighted were in relation to Joe's revelations over time and in the end about this aspect of modern life. The point made about the value of face to face interactions and the importance of meaningful connections in the real world was well done and not rendered in a Luddite's fever. I loved what this book had to say about the convergence of what's real and what's manufactured for consumption and how it can not only be hurtful but worse, dangerous. While the shifting relationships and lies are the initial draw for the story, the cautionary tale lies in this secondary theme. This is the bit of the story that will remain with me.

While this was a bit of domestic thriller (per the book blurb/summary), it did feel a bit like something else in addition that I can't quite put my finger on (psychological social media thriller?). Recommended for users of social media everywhere. To the aware and judicious users who won't be shocked and shaken and to the users who just may stop and read those ToS for real next time before blithely clicking "Accept".

Thanks to St. Martins Press and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.

Summary: What if you have the perfect life, the perfect wife and the perfect child—then, in one shattering moment, you discover nothing is as it seems? Now you are in the sights of a ruthless killer determined to destroy everything you treasure.
It’s the evening drive home from work on a route Joe Lynch has taken a hundred times with his young son. But today, Joe sees his wife meet another man—an encounter that will rip two families apart. Raising the question: Can we ever really trust those closest to us?
Joe will do whatever it takes to protect his family, but as the deception unravels, so does his life. A life played out without any rules. And a cunning opponent who’s always one step ahead.

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