Behind Every Lie by Christina McDonald
Gallery Books: 2/4/20
eBook review copy; 336 pages
Behind Every Lie by Christina McDonald is a highly recommended domestic thriller.
Hansen is engaged to Liam Sullivan and seems to be getting her life
back on track after an earlier unnamed traumatic occurrence (that will
be revealed later). When she wakes up in the hospital and discovers that
she was struck by lightning, she learns that she was found down the
street from her mother's home and that her mother, Kat, has been
murdered. Apparently Eva is a suspect and the police are eager to
question her. Eva can't remember what happened, but knows that she
couldn't have murdered her mom, could she? Then she finds a letter
addressed to her in her mother's things that sends her traveling from
Seattle to London. Kat lived in London before moving to the USA with
Eva, so Eva hopes that the answers to what happened will be found there.
The action moves along quickly in Behind Every Lie, setting a
break-neck pace as more and more details and secrets are revealed from
both Eva and Kat's past. The narrative is told through Kat and Eva's
point of view in alternating chapters, so you follow what Kat was going
through back in England up to the present day while at the same time
learning about Eva's discoveries and her past trauma. As more of the
diverse stories are told, you will begin to make sense of what happened
in the past and question what actually happened to Kat.
I liked the alternating points-of-view between mother and daughter,
and the suspicion that every character is under as the plot unfolds. All
the characters seem untrustworthy at some point and the final
denouement may take many readers by surprise, although others may have
been suspicious about what was going on. Even though believably is
frequently stretched, I was hooked into frantically reading to discover
what happened next and if my suspicions and guesses about plot points
While very entertaining and engaging, McDonald seemed to throw a
whole lot into this plot that would have benefited from being a bit more
focused and not so wildly full of so many diverse secrets,
coincidences, and implausible circumstances. I didn't quite believe some
of the secrets would have been kept or not recalled much sooner.
Character development suffered under the weight of so many different
secrets and new developments. McDonald does regain points for sheer
My review copy was courtesy of Simon & Schuster.