My thanks to Tracy Fenton of Compulsive Readers. I shouted a lot, about Harriet’s previous book, Blood Orange, so I am delighted to review The Lies You Told – Harriet Tyce’s second book, published by Wildfire Books on 20th August.
Shocking, dark, addictive – THE LIES YOU TOLD is the compulsive new psychological thriller from Harriet Tyce, author of Sunday Times bestseller and Richard and Judy book club thriller BLOOD ORANGE. Perfect for fans of APPLE TREE YARD, BIG LITTLE LIES, and ANATOMY OF A SCANDAL
Has she left her child in the care of a killer?
Sadie has moved back to London so her daughter can attend the exclusive school her domineering mother has secured her a place at. It’s highly sought-after and highly competitive – just like the other mothers, Sadie soon discovers.
While she’s trying to get her daughter settled and navigate the fraught politics of the school gate, Sadie is also trying to reclaim a position in her old legal chambers – she used to practice as a criminal barrister. She’s given the junior brief on a scandalous case involving a male teacher and his student. It’s an opportunity to prove herself, but will she let a dangerous flirtation cloud her professional judgement? And will her sudden close friendship with another mother prevent her from seeing the truth – and the threat that she’s inviting into her home?
Our Author – Harriet Tyce
Harriet Tyce was born and grew up in Edinburgh. She did a degree in English Literature at Oxford University before a law conversion course at City University, following which she was a criminal barrister for nearly ten years.
Having escaped law and early motherhood, she started writing, and recently completed the MA in Creative Writing – Crime Fiction at the University of East Anglia. Blood Orange is her first novel, and The Lies You Told will be published in August 2020.
She lives in north London with her husband and children, and two rather demanding pets, a cat and a dog.
My Review – The Lies You Told
Harriet’s second book The Lies You Told is out on 20th August and certainly delivers the goods again after the huge success of her previous book Blood Orange. Sadie Roper has been forced out of a loveless marriage by husband Andrew. Forced to leave America shes back home in the UK again. After the death of her mother and the stipulations in her will means she has no choice but to go back to the childhood home she left 15 years ago.
She brings with her, Robin, her daughter who she would literally do anything for. But again her mothers will has taken control, for now and Robin must attend the all girls school Ashams. It’s the school Sadie went to and is difficult to gain a place, so when Robin shows up out of no where the current parents take umbrage that Robin will steal one of their girls places for the senior school, despite the fact it’s based on the eleven + exam results. Robin is flying through the tests and getting great results, her previous schooling in America has clearly been her saving grace.
New home, new school, new job for Sadie and these pressures on top of making new friends are taking its toll, espically when head of the PTA Julia takes a stance against Sadie and therefore Robin and the parents and children have no choice but to also join ranks and ostracise the newbies too. How alone poor Robin must have felt. Sadie’s had all this before herself, being an ‘old-girl’ and it’s not until this is made clear that she’s proves her names on the board of old school captains and established her right to have got a longed for place at the drop of a hat like they did. That is the reason isn’t it, that they got a place so suddenly? Because Sadie went to Ashams too, and this may have swayed Robins attendance, but also adds to Sadie’s forboding for Robin. Sadie’s time at Ashams was not a happy one. Although she did make friends there that she still has now, Zora Shah, now a solicitor and it’s her that has helped Sadie get work again as a barrister.
Almost as she’s shown she’s an ‘old-girl’ the stance against Sadie and Robin is relaxed. Julia and Nicole sweep Robin up in a flurry of invites to sleep overs and Sadie is swept along. Quickly embroiled into their lives, as single mothers themselves they suddenly provide the stability that Sadie needs. But she’s still wary after their initial lack of a warm welcome, and she’d be right to follow her gut on this occasion.
Zora has got some work for Sadie, she has been brought into a case of he said/she said with a teacher – grooming a vulnerable pupil that has lies and scandal written all over it. Sadie is part of the defence team for Jeremy and has to prove that Freya the pupil, then 15 is lying. She has to trawl through Freya’s life to look for contact between the pair and can find nothing, to substantiate the claims being made. She of course, must believe her client Jeremy and as they spend time together she couldn’t imagine him being anything but the concerned teacher, trying to help out Freya and she is helping him to portray this in court and discredit Freya by means of social media and all that it has to reveal. And these days if you want to find out anything about people, that’s the first place to look. Jeremy’s overbearing mother thinks he’s still 12 and his pushy father who presence is absent but lingering.
There’s also a narrative through out, which becomes clearer when Sadie’s instincts are proven correct. Harriet’s characters are written so well that they could easier be anyone you know, pushy parents at the school gates have existed as long as the school pick up has and fake friends who wouldn’t think twice about taking the glory from others.
A gritty physiological thriller baited with implications and lies. Which are revealed bit by bit through out, creating an air of mystery and puzzle pieces that need slotting together. A real page turner, with court room drama thrown in adds extra substance and with Harriet having practiced as a barrister, who better to write about it.
The Lies You Told is a great book and strong second publication from Harriet Tyce that will enthral readers.
I had the pleasure of first meeting and being introduced to Harriet’s writing at a bloggers night, last January in Bath, held by Headline – An exciting ‘New Voices’ launch saw several new talents hitting the world of publishing running. Blood Orange was published into the world, creating a flurry of excitement. I loved it and it became one of my 3 top books of 2019.
To purchase The Lies you Told https://bertsbooks.co.uk/product/the-lies-you-told/
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