Review: The Lie by C.L. Taylor

Thursday 7 May 2015
Title: The Lie
Author: C.L. Taylor
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: 23rd April 2015
Format: Paperback
Pages: 400
ISBN: 9780007544271
Source: Review Copy
Rating: 4.5/5
Purchase: Amazon
I know your name’s not really Jane Hughes . . .

Jane Hughes has a loving partner, a job in an animal sanctuary and a tiny cottage in rural Wales. She’s happier than she’s ever been but her life is a lie. Jane Hughes does not really exist.

Five years earlier Jane and her then best friends went on holiday but what should have been the trip of a lifetime rapidly descended into a nightmare that claimed the lives of two of the women.

Jane has tried to put the past behind her but someone knows the truth about what happened. Someone who won’t stop until they've destroyed Jane and everything she loves . . .

I have to start this review by mentioning the fantastic PR campaign that was carried out in the run up to its release. Myself and some other bloggers started to receive some mysterious parcels in the post. I will admit to falling for the first one for a couple of seconds thinking it was real, and the second one was genuinely creepy. Here's a reminder:

Jane Hughes receives a letter at work alerting her to the fact that somebody knows that her name isn't Jane Hughes and that she is in fact called Emma. Emma went on holiday with three of her best friends five years ago, to what was supposed to be a relaxing retreat in Nepal. The retreat was anything but relaxing. Only two of the friends came back from the holiday alive. Now somebody is out to destroy Emma's life, and everything and everyone that she loves...

I picked up The Lie wanting to be hooked in straightaway, and I was. I read the first half of this book in one sitting. I have read some comments from people saying that they struggled with the way the book jumped back and forth from the present day, to the time of the girls' holiday and I have to say this was one of the strongest parts of the storytelling for me. I was immediately intrigued, wanting to know exactly what happened. It really is a suspenseful opening. C.L. Taylor tells the story brilliantly, feeding the reader information bit by bit, keeping the suspense up the whole way through. I honestly had no idea just what it was that would happen on the holiday to tear these already quite fragile friendships apart, but I couldn't wait to find out.

C.L. Taylor's strength lies not only in her masterful storytelling, but in the characters that she creates. A line very early on in the book left me with more than one suspicion about someone, it's not something that is immediately obvious but I was left wondering whether there was more to it. Readers are definitely going to have conflicting thoughts about the characters in this book going from hating them, to wondering whether you should sympathise with them, even wondering if it's okay to like any of them. Their messed up friendship is all too believable, they can be very fickle, the smallest thing driving a wedge between them, let alone the major thing that occurs in The Lie. The friendships really are brilliantly drawn, nobody in this book is perfect, and it was so easy for me to imagine these characters as real people, thrown into a situation that could actually happen. I was immediately on guard reading this book, unwilling to take the characters that we are introduced to at face value, knowing full well that those who appear trustworthy at first, are often anything but.

To elaborate on the blurb even just a tiny bit would certainly ruin this story, seriously, nothing can be revealed. All I can say is trust me and the countless other reviewers that are singing the praises of this book. The Lie focuses on something that genuinely creeps me out, and frightens me at the thought of how easy it is for people to get caught up in something like it. I know that sentence is stupidly ambiguous but I really can't share what happens as the book progresses so that is all that I can say! It is a thought-provoking read in places. The ending of the book and the closing chapters are brilliant, breathtaking, suspenseful, intense, all the cliches.

C.L. Taylor goes from strength to strength with The Lie, and the majority of readers will finish this book crying out for more. Her imagination is just the kind of imagination I want from an author, coming up with stories like this, and putting them in a book for me to devour in just a couple of sittings. The Lie comes highly recommended by me as does The Accident for those readers who are yet to pick it up.


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