Lies That Bind Usby Published 01 Jun 2018
|Lies That Bind Us.pdf|
|Publisher||Lake Union Publishing|
From a prize-winning and New York Times bestselling author comes a chilling novel of deception under the sun…
Jan needs this. She’s flying to Crete to reunite with friends she met there five years ago and relive an idyllic vacation. Basking in the warmth of the sun, the azure sea, and the aura of antiquity, she can once again pretend—for a little while—that she belongs. Her ex-boyfriend Marcus will be among them, but even he doesn’t know the secrets she keeps hidden behind a veil of lies. None of them really know her, and that’s only part of the problem.
Then again, how well does she know them?
When Jan awakens in utter darkness, chained to a wall, a manacle around her wrist, her echoing screams only give her a sense of how small her cell is. As she desperately tries to reconstruct what happened and determine who is holding her prisoner, dread covers despair like a hand clamped over her mouth. Because, like the Minotaur in the labyrinth in Greek myth, her captor will be coming back for her, and all the lies will catch up to her…
"Lies That Bind Us" Reviews
3.5 Stars— “Lies That Bind Us” by Andrew Hart was a Kindle First selection that I put off reading because the premise of the book sounded weak. Despite the fact that “Lies” starts off ridiculously slow, my opinion of the book changed about halfway in as I found myself fully consumed by the very well drawn characters whose phony outer shells come off to reveal damaged, interesting people. The book is told from the perspective of Jan (another unreliable, compulsive liar narrator) who goes to Greece for a reunion of sorts with 4 friends and an ex-boyfriend who all met while she and her ex were on vacation there 5 years prior. The awkwardness and tension begin when Jan arrives and finds out one of the other characters invites her female friend to come along as a potential romantic match for Jan’s ex-boyfriend. The plot and mystery which the book is centered around is weak at best but the author’s ability to draw such distinctive characters who speak with such different voices drew me in. One of the other friends, Brad, is such an obnoxious, know-it-all, he will remind you of the type of person that you try to avoid but get stuck listening too at a dinner party for 3 hours straight. The book comes to a neat conclusion, and I admit as weak as I thought the book was at times, I could not put it down for the final 80 pages. I definitely liked it better than a lot of reviewers and would definitely give the author another try in the future.
My Kindle First Read choice for May- it is listed as Suspense, but I think it's more of a psychological thriller. The story took a totally different turn than I was expecting, very good read- entertaining.
Tedious, superfluous, terrible characters
Really couldn’t stand this book. Disliked even the main character, in addition to all the characters. The story was just so overdone, the ending completely ridiculous and unbelievable. I wanted to put it down a hundred times and I should have.
Well, I gave it a day or so before reviewing and it still isn't much easier. I tortured myself over whether it was a 3 or 4 star book, in the end I rounded down to 3 stars, but it was marginal.
The plot is good and fairly novel. There are twists, but to be honest I could see the outline of the climax and pretty much guessed the culprits from a little over halfway through. Some of the lesser twists were a bit of a surprise, but that predictability (for me at least - maybe I've read too many mysteries and psychological thrillers) is the main reason I rounded down instead of up.
The characters....hmmm. I actually like the main protagonist, Jan. Perversely, I like the fact that she is inherently unlikable, a compulsive liar who sabotages her own life and those around her with her fabrications. I like her despite that because of her self awareness, the fact she hates herself for it and wishes she were different. I feel the other characters, though, are a little thin; not exactly two dimensional, but not really fleshed out enough to form an attachment, even Marcus, the closest Jan has to a co-conspirator. Some of the characters are decidedly unlikable, but that's how the author wants them to be. Maybe a little overdone in some cases, but that's okay, I get it. Gretchen, I could do without and really don't see the point in her. I just found her irritating from start to finish.
Some reviewers have complained that the book verges on a mythology history lesson at times, but I don't mind that, and while not integral to the plot, it does at least give some character to the setting and plays into the psychological mindset of some characters in their ordeals.
Overall, I'm probably making this a 3.49 star book. So nearly 4 stars but not quite. I did enjoy it, and I would read more from the author for sure. I could see it being a great holiday read, sitting by the pool (though maybe not in Crete!). Just a couple of minor frailties keeping it fractionally south of the border for me.
I'm surprised this book is ranking so low - this is one of my favorite reads of 2018! (And I'm normally a harsh critic).
This is a story about lying.
The main character lies to both us the readers and the other characters, and yet, she does share with us her true feelings that she hides from the other characters, so we sort of trust her and yet we don't. I love characters that are multi-dimensional and have obvious flaws.
I love the idea that this book references a lot of Greek mythology, which you can argue, are also lies. Stories that aren't real, but are meant to teach us something about ourselves.
The constant side stories of mythology (hiding Baby Zeus from his father) and World War II (The Allies protecting the city of Alexandria) emphasize the use of misdirection for a greater purpose. Again, more lying, but interesting moral dilemma: Is it wrong? In this context, no.
The dynamic of the group, the six "good friends" is also riddled with quirks and words and actions that are inconsistent with true friendships. Again, more lying to each other about what they actually think of one another.
All of these things are really cool ways to integrate the theme but make it relevant to the reader.
I also thought he tells the story of Jan's imprisonment chillingly well. Like I feel other authors glance over this - the girl wakes up, she's chained up in a basement and she has an escape plan after 2 paragraphs. Jan methodically goes over different scenarios and tries different things to find freedom - it made me there in the room doing those same things.
I am currently very cranky at work because I stayed up far too late last night finishing the book. Totally worth it.