Saturday, March 12, 2022

The Lying Club

The Lying Club by Annie Ward
3/22/22; 432 pages
Park Row Books

The Lying Club by Annie Ward is a recommended psychological thriller.

Natalie, an office assistant at the elite private Falcon Academy, wakes up in her car in the school parking lot. When she tries to figure out why she was there, she sees a body lying in blood inside the school and she becomes the main suspect for the murder. The novel then jumps back in time six months and we meet Brooke, a wealthy entitled serial cheater and ardent supporter of her daughter Sloane, and Asha, a realtor and protective mother of her daughter Mia. Adding to the tension is the handsome assistant athletic director Nick, who is a smooth operator. Natalie is dating him, but is certainly not alone in this, Brooke wants him, and Asha needs him. Both Brooke and Asha have hired him to give their daughters private soccer lessons.

Pluses include solid and descriptive writing, a good opening scene that captures your attention, lots of secrets to disclose, basically a good solid story, a rivalry between the daughters and mothers, some interesting twists, and deceit and more deceit. Minuses are a very, very slow pace after a good opening, disagreeable and unlikable characters, characters who are caricatures of a type of person, a well-tread predictable plot with a familiar theme, Natalie's causal self-medicating, and it requires a serious commitment to stick with it through the slow parts. The pace doesn't pick up until the last quarter of the novel. I'm recommending this because many people will like it a bit more than I do. It is a good novel, but the plot is simply too slow and familiar for a higher rating.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of the publisher/author via Edelweiss.

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