Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Publication Date: 05 Dec 2006
Series or Standalone: Series
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
First Line: There were times when she wished he were dead.
Beautiful Lies by Lisa Unger is a story that calls into question a person’s identity. What do you do when the world and life you thought you knew turned out to be based on a web of lies? The novel is told in the first person by Ridley Jones a free-lance writer whose life changes when she is in the right place at the right time and saves a child from getting hit by a car. This small act gives her 15 minutes of fame and brings her to the attention of a man claiming to be her father. That she was kidnapped on the night her mother was murdered. While some people might dismiss the story as coming from a crack pot looking for attention, Ridley does not. Instead it causes her to question everything that she thought was true.
Beautiful Lies is a debut novel for Unger and as such there are a few flaws with it. What I found most annoying while reading was that it was very repetitious. It seemed like every other page I turned Ridley was saying once again how her entire life was turned upside down by one small act. There were also times when it was hard to figure out the time line. The events were all in chronological order but the narration didn’t always make it clear. Most of the time it seemed as though Ridley was talking about events as they happened…then every so often she would do a quick flash forward or backtrack. Although perhaps that’s just a result of the fact that I get up so early these mornings to catch the train.
I also found it hard to fully engross myself in the events of the story. I couldn’t ever seem to convince myself that it was real and could actually happen so that took a little something away from my enjoyment of the book. I like to immerse myself into the stories that I read whenever I can. Overall though this was a fast paced mystery (albeit an easy one to figure out) from a new author that shows promise. I look forward to reading more from Lisa Unger to seeing how her writing develops in the future.
Ridley Jones Series Order
Book 1: Beautiful Lies
Book 2: Sliver of Truth