This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Review Exchange Program, which is open to all authors and is completely free. Simply put, you agree to provide an honest review an author's book in exchange for the author doing the same for you. What sites your reviews are posted on (B&N, Amazon, etc.) and whether you send digital (eBook, PDF, Word, etc.) or hard copies of your books to each other for review is up to you. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email, and be sure to describe your book or include a link to your Readers' Favorite review page or Amazon page.
Reviewed by Viga Boland for Readers' Favorite
Even before you have finished reading the opening chapter of The Truth in a Lie by Jan Turk Petrie, you know you have discovered a skilled creative writer. It takes well-honed writing talent to quickly arouse reader interest in something as ordinary as moving residences and to hint, through carefully created dialogue, at the as-yet-undisclosed reasons for strain in two relationships: that between lovers and that between a mother and daughter. Carefully chosen words and phrases that focus on showing rather than telling us about the key areas of plot, characterization, mood, and setting are all established in Chapter One, and we are curious to learn more about what hasn’t yet been revealed e.g. why Charlotte, the protagonist, bottles up so much of what she’s feeling; why her daughter, Kate, seems hell-bent on doing things differently from her mother; why Lottie and Michael have split up and, intriguingly, why Duncan, Lottie’s now-remarried ex, is suddenly back in her life when her mother is on her death-bed.
Under the strain of watching her mother die, bit by bit Lottie reveals to us the truth behind the lies. As she does, though the plot details may be different from what happens in our own lives, readers will recognize themselves as Jan Turk Petrie gets into the guts of human psyches, motivations, actions, and consequences. I can’t tell you how many times I stopped, quietly laughed, and thought, “Yep...that’s exactly what I would say or how I would feel.” When an author does that for me, has made me connect so closely with her fictional characters, she is one superb writer. According to Petrie’s bio, The Truth in a Lie is quite a departure from her previous genres. She is a huge fan of Margaret Atwood. So am I. Like Atwood, Petrie doesn’t rely on super-hero characters pulling off amazing feats. Petrie’s characters are ordinary people living ordinary lives but we can’t forget them because they are so like us. The Truth in a Lie is top literary fiction: characters matter more than plot. The novel’s power lies in its simplicity, and it’s wonderful!