Thursday, 11 May 2017

ONE PERFECT LIE - by Lisa Scottoline

ONE PERFECT LIE - Lisa Scottoline.
Published: 2017 - by St Martin's Press.
Genres: Adult / thriller / mystery / contemporary fiction
Pages: 384.
Source: Thank you to St Martin's Press for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.

On paper, Chris Brennan looks perfect. He's applying for a job as a high school government teacher, he's ready to step in as an assistant baseball coach, and his references are impeccable. But everything about Chris Brennan is a lie. Susan Sematov is proud of her son Raz, a high school pitcher so athletically talented that he's being recruited for a full-ride scholarship to a Division I college, with a future in major-league baseball. But Raz’s father died only a few months ago, leaving her son in a vulnerable place where any new father figure might influence him for good, or evil. Heather Larkin is a struggling single mother who lives for her son Justin's baseball games. But Justin is shy, and Heather fears he is being lured down a dark path by one of his teammates, a young man from an affluent family whose fun-loving manner might possibly conceal his violent plans. Mindy Kostis succumbs to the pressure of being a surgeon's wife by filling her days with social events and too many gin and tonics. But she doesn’t know that her husband and her son, Evan, are keeping secrets from her – secrets that might destroy all of them. At the center of all of them is Chris Brennan. Why is he there? What does he want? And what is he willing to do to get it?

I love thrillers. I love the mystery, the adrenaline, the feeling of racing through the pages and watching them hurtle by. It's fantastic.
And in a nutshell, this thriller accomplished what a decent thriller should do: kept me reading and kept me guessing. But unfortunately it wasn't enough to make me love it.


The start of the book is packed with clumsy info dumping and telling instead of showing. This does decrease as the book progresses, but the info dumping is always there (especially patent in the dialogue). It's not terrible, just distracting and a bit frustrating. But it does become less noticeable as the story continues. 

It's never boring. It's entertaining, gripping, and the plot is taut, intense, intricate and solidly clever. I raced through the pages; finishing it in just under three days. It keeps you gripped and guessing, and I loved that.


The characters are strong, original and three-dimensional, with the exception of Chris. I loved the women of the novel, and they are definitely the ones carrying the story. Heather is my personal favourite and she frequently made me smile. She's such a darling, I want to hug her. But I didn't like the romance between her and Chris; it felt like it was just there so there would be a romance.
The descriptions of the characters are awesome: very individualistic, intimate, and it's easy to see who everyone is.
I didn't like the main character: Chris. Next to the strong personalities of the women, he came across flat, weak, and even a little stereotypical.  But while I never liked him, I did like how my perception of him was effortlessly controlled by the author; I started reading believing one thing about him, and suddenly BAM - he was actually the total opposite. Maybe my initial misconception was just stemming from my own existing stereotypes, but I liked having the rug pulled out from under me.

There's something missing in the book, though. While I did like it, it didn't suck me in. When I came away from the final page, it just felt.......dry. And looking back, it even appears a bit mundane; despite my initial racing to get to the end. It's a good novel and well written, but not great or memorable.



One Perfect Lie is a good thriller, but it didn't blow me away. It's fun and entertaining and features some awesome heroines, but it's missing something. 
However, I do still recommend it. It's the kind of book I'll pick up once in a while and flick through again just for fun. And overall, it is fun; just not amazing. 



5 comments:

  1. I have this with thrillers a lot where the book is just fine but missing that special somethnig that makes it great. and then when I get one that is great, those are the best. :) Glad you liked this one even if it wasn't fantastic. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES! Exactly.
      Thanks :)

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    2. I completely agree Greg! It's so frustrating when you can't tell what's missing, but as soon as you finish an a amazing book, the answer seems to come to you instantly!

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    3. Exactly! Glad I'm not the only one... :)

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