“Lies” by T. M. Logan is a first person narrative by Joe Lynch. He is schoolteacher who has a three-bedroom duplex in an OK London neighborhood, a ten-year-old car, and a son, William, age four and a bit. He also has an awesome navy T-shirt featuring a speech bubble with white text saying, “I’m silently correcting your grammar.”
Joe tells the story. He talks to himself; “Don’t show your hand.” He talks to readers; “Do you really believe that?” What does everything add up to?” He asks himself questions; “What the hell do I do now? He asks readers questions; “What do you know? What do you actually know for sure?” He shares his thoughts; “It is better to know. Worry about the rest later.” He gives himself advice; “Just get back to the car. Get the hell out of here, and don’t make the same mistake again.”
Chapters delineate the day of the week to keep readers on track and to facilitate tracking time progression. Joe finds out that a lot can happen in a week. “I often wonder what would have happened if I hadn’t seen her car that day.”
While picking up his son after school, he sees his wife Mel’s car. He makes a spontaneous decision that changes everything. “Let’s go and surprise Mummy.” Unfortunately, something is wrong, very wrong, and this is only first piece in a long series of wrongs. He struggles to make sense of everything, or of anything.
He does not understand why his wife would lie, or why anyone would lie. He opens social media, and there is the lie on Facebook, for the entire world to see. He needs to find answers, and yet he encounters lie after lie, bubbling to the surface like a volcanic eruption. He knows there must be an explanation for this, a reasonable explanation. Yet, there are more lies.
“It was like finding a trapdoor under the rug in your living room, and you lift it up and there’s a whole other world down there right beneath your feet, hidden wheels and cogs and gears all moving, shifting your life one way or another without you even realizing it.”
Social media gives Joe a strange view of his own life as well as the lives of other people. The storyline is sprinkled with cell phone calls, text messages, social media posts, and e-mails. Joe’s life unravels as encounters lie after lie after lie, and eventually there is no way to tell the difference between the truth and what Joe wants the truth to be. After a long week for Joe, things come to a screaming finish that will surprise even the most perceptive reader.
I received a copy of “Lies” from T. M. Logan, St Martin’s Press, and NetGalley. It is a captivating book, and it was hard to put down. It is a thriller filled with big lies, little lies, and big, big surprises.