The BookBrowse Review

Published June 22, 2022

ISSN: 1930-0018

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Book Jacket

The Lies I Tell
A Novel
by Julie Clark
21 Jun 2022
320 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Genre: Thrillers
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BookBrowse members resident in the USA can request free review copies of books through our First Impressions program. Below are their opinions on one such book...

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Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Robin B. (Olmsted Falls, OH)

The Lies I Tell
I greatly enjoyed this book. I loved the twists and turns and enjoyed the mouse and cat game played between the two main characters. I am now reading another book by the same author I was so impressed. Characters were well developed.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Tara T. (Carterville, IL)

The Lies I Tell
After reading The Last Flight and absolutely loving it I was really looking forward to The Lies I Tell. And it does not disappoint at all! I absolutely loved every minute of this book. I thought I had this all figured out only to realize I was way off. It was full of lots of twists and turns. I loved it! Highly recommended!!
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Julia A. (New York, NY)

Clark does it again!
I didn't think Julie Clark could top The Last Flight, but top it she did! In Kat and Meg, she has given us two main characters about whom I has a reader came to care perhaps more than I should, given the human flaws of each. This book had me questioning even the very title. Whose lies? Meg's for sure, but Kat's too. When Meg's motives become clear, it's hard to know whether to call her a grafter or a vigilante. Kat's lies get her close to Meg, but her motives are to me less pure perhaps than Meg's. To avoid spoilers, I will just say that in the end the male characters who wronged the female characters get what they deserve (with a possible exception) and this woman, for one, has to come to the guilty admission that she has been rooting for that to happen. The plot details are intricate enough to hold the reader's interest throughout. I look forward to more from Julie Clark.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Michele N. (Bethesda, MD)

The Lies I Tell
After reading Clark's "The Last Flight," I became a fan and looked forward to her next book. "The Lies I Tell" was just as good, maybe better. I found Meg (Maggie? Melody?) and Kat to be more believable than the two women in "The Last Flight." I was pulled into the story line from the beginning. It alternates between the two women, although I found Meg's character more fleshed out than Kat. The story is suspenseful with plenty of twists and turns. And towards the end, when you think you've got it figured out, you're wrong! Highly recommend.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Marion C. (Peabody, MA)

Meg and Kat
The Lies I Tell is a brilliant, twisted thriller that grabs you from the beginning. Meg, or is it Maggy or Melody, is a con artist trying to right the wrong she experienced as a young woman. She develops a devious plan to right that wrong. Kat, the other woman, a writer, has been following Meg for years, trying to prove the story behind Meg's activities. She suspects Meg is a con artist but needs proof. I enjoyed the refreshing premise behind the novel. If you relished Clark's other books, you would love The Lies I Tell.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Jeanne W. (Colorado Springs, CO)

Twisty-turny Thriller
I loved this thriller! Julie Clark has a real flair for this back and forth kind of story-telling. You expect to not like some of the characters but the two leads are very likable and Clark does an excellent job of explaining why Meg and Kat are the way they are. I felt like Meg was a little more fleshed-out than Kat but I enjoyed reading about both. It's not high-brow literature but great escapist reading. A sequel with Kat's next adventure might be fun!
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Susan S. (Springdale, AR)

The Lies I Tell
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, or conned, or cheated, or used, or...

I found myself rooting for the con artist, knowing that what she was doing was wrong but feeling that it was just so right. I loved that Meg partnered with unsuspecting women to target men who deserved it. Keeping true to her mother's rule that "two women working together are a force to be reckoned with," Meg seeks to even the score not only for herself but for other women whose lives have been adversely affected by scheming men. As her high school advocate would say "It's the girl code. We have to look out for each other because no one else will." Meg takes this to heart as she plays a modern-day Robin Hood, taking from the scheming men and giving to the women who had been hurt by them. Kudos to you, Meg! Go get 'em!!!
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Barbara E. (Rockville, MD)

The Lies I Tell
The Lies I Tell is a truly surprising book. The tale is told from two perspectives that of Kat and Meg, women whose lives have been entangled for 10 years. Meg is a con artist and one phone call from her to Kat led to great trauma. At the beginning of the novel it appears as if Kat, a reporter, is stalking Meg, but as the story progresses, the cat and mouse game becomes more muddled. Who is Meg really conning? Who is lying? The conclusion of the book is truly surprising. This is a real page turner of a story. I highly recommend The Lies I Tell.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Candace F. (Lincoln, NE)

One of the Best
I loved Julie Clark's book "The Flight" and have been anxiously anticipating her new book. I was so excited when I was selected to receive an ARC of this book. It certainly didn't disappoint. Clark weaves an intricate web that pulls you in at the start. The characters of Meg and Kat are so well developed I felt like I knew them personally. Clark is a genius developing the plot of this story bringing down powerful, corrupt men and justice or the innocent victims. My first thought after reading the book was "Robin Hood". My second thought was, "I wish I could read this book again for the first time". Julie Clark, keep them coming! You are at the top of my fav list!
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Patty S. (Towson, MD)

Will Keep You Guessing
Whew! I am a fan of psychological thrillers in general, but this one was over the top. Every time I thought I knew where the plot was going... Bam! Nope! What happens when revenge becomes a life goal? We see how it plays out in the lives of two women, Meg and Kat, who are determined to achieve their goals. Julie Clark has written a brilliant page-turner of a story I could not put down.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Beth M. (New York, NY)

A first rate thriller you can't put down!
Wow. Julia Clark has done it again. I was so excited I got to read an early reader copy. I will be recommending this book to my book club and all my friends. What made this book so great were the two main characters. Meg and Kat were both smart, cunning and complex women. Who will succeed in their 'cat and mouse" game. Is Meg really a monster or just a woman seeking revenge? Does Kat get to redeem herself? Who really is the con? Can they really be friends? I read this book late into the night. It's just that good. What a wild ride.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Susanna K. (Willow Street, PA)

From the very first page, I was immediately captivated!! The story of two women, Meg and Kat, each had reasons leading up to how they wanted to live their lives. It is hard to put it down but take a break to absorb what you've read. With the twists and turns to their stories the reader might favor one woman over the other…. but…. "Are things always what they seem?" The ending depends on your interruption of what exactly is happy ever after!!! All that being said… I LOVED THIS BOOK!!!
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by John A. (Austin, TX)

Suspenseful, psychological thriller.
The Lies I Tell is a fascinating story about an avenger con artist and a journalist who is also on a mission of revenge. The story is superbly told with lots of twists and turns, and it is a fast, fun read. It is one of the most enjoyable books that I have read over the past few years.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Rebecca Holliman

Excellent Psychological Thriller
This excellent thriller moves between the viewpoints of two protagonists, one a con artist and the other a journalist, who pit themselves against each other in a cat and mouse game that spans decades. The ever-changing perceptions that each character has about the other parallel the reader's view of the two women as the story progresses. The motives of all the characters slip and slide in a constantly shifting prism as the story unwinds: who are the good guys and who are the bad guys here? Who is telling the truth? Who is conning whom?

I found the characters believable, and the twists and turns keep the tension running strong as the novel unfolds. This novel is a lot of fun to read and also raises important questions about money, power, revenge, and justice in modern America.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Lani

What is veracity?
When you eat popcorn it's hard to eat one piece. It is hard not to take a handful and stuff it in your mouth. Well, popcorn and I had an amazing ride with a book I finished in two days. The pages began to fly as I easily devoured this crackling mystery. I loved her previous book but I think she has outdone herself. The story revolves around two women, one who goes by different names (Meg, Melody, Maggie) as she cons her way across time, bilking people out of personal wealth and possessions. Her big aim is to reach a man who tricked her mother into losing their home so that she and her mother ended up living in a car. The other woman (Kate) has her own criterion for wanting to expose the first woman. As a journalist she slowly delves into "Meg's life, trying to unmask Meg for ruining her life in the past. As lies and maneuvering abound, both of them arrive to a new admission that there is more than meets the eye.

With its breakneck speed and fleshed out characters, this book will keep you riveted to the last page. Run. Run. Run to submerge yourself in an escape from life. You won't be sorry.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Janet T. (Westford, MA)

The Lies I Tell
The Girl Code evolves throughout this intriguing novel written by Julie Clark. "The Lies I Tell" is told through two voices, Meg and Kat , whose initial intersection happens 10 years before the present day of the book. Their relationship weaves throughout the story and a realignment of intent changes for both of them as each of them grow. The clear message is that until you fully understand motives you don't really know a person. An enjoyable, intriguing read that is hard to put down. The ending is very satisfying and not expected.

I will recommend this to my book club. It has great character development and will create a lively discussion. I enjoyed the book immensely and will read other books by Julie Clark
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Beth B. (New Wilmington, PA)

A Tangled Web
Incredible!! A chilling ten-year plan of skillful revenge. Find a comfy chair, buckle your seat belt and delve into The Lives I Tell by Julia Clark. The author leads readers on a merry chase as crafty and resourceful Meg Williams plots a complicated con artist jigsaw.

This book won't be quiet!! Your mind will revisit the story time and again. I'll wager your next step will be identical to mine: I immediately ordered the writer's two previous novels and anticipate another memorable reading experience.
Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Elizabeth P. (Lower Burrell, PA)

LOVED IT - Elizabeth @Silver'sReviews
Meg definitely knew how to lie and to con people.

She knew how to con because of her rough childhood and having to live in a car after her mother's boyfriend conned them out of their house.

She made it her goal to ruin him.

In the meantime, Meg would research someone in the news that had troubles, but she also made sure they had a nice place to live and money that she could make disappear into her own account.

She always made sure her past was covered up and no one could really find out who she was.

But Kat did find her and did know her and made it her goal to ruin Meg's life the way Meg ruined Kat's life ten years ago. She wants to expose Meg by writing a book about her cons.

Can Kat do it? Or does Meg have a plan of her own for Kat? Meg is pretty cunning.

We follow Kat as she makes friends with Meg, as Meg investigates Kat because she doesn't believe the story Kat tells her, as Meg keeps conning, and as they both try to seek revenge on who they want to ruin.

Will they both do what they sought to do?

My money was on Meg. She really was a major con artist with cons that were ones difficult to believe people would fall for.

Kat seemed too naive to trip up Meg.

THE LIES I TELL is a psychological thriller that will keep you guessing, have you shaking your head, and one that you won't want to put down. 5/5

This book was given to me for an honest review.
Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Judith M. (Granville, OH)

The Good Con
Kat held Meg responsible for a violent attack in her past. Meg held Ron responsible for the insecurity of her childhood. Along the way Ron and other men were made to pay for their crimes against women. Kat, a reporter, investigated Meg's crimes. But were they crimes or justice? This book was about the perfect con, revenge, justice, complicated women, and motivation. And the collision between the two women. I was hooked from the beginning not only by the story and the story telling, but also by the development of these two into strong women.
Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Catherine H. (Asbury Park, NJ)

The Lies I Tell
This is a story of a clever charade between a journalist seeking revenge by exposing a con artist. I found my loyalty alternating between characters as my perspective shifted. Is a partial truth a lie?

What I enjoyed most was the insight into what makes a con work. How studying her marks thoroughly she drew them in by building trust. Using manipulation and deception a seemingly smart person can be tricked.

I recommend this suspenseful thriller that will hold your interest to the surprised ending. It will make you question, is doing the wrong thing for the "right" reason, OK? The Lies I Tell is sure to be a great beach read this summer.
Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Freya H. (Phoenix, AZ)

The Lies I Tell
If you are into thrillers, this book is for you. I read it in two sittings simply because, from the first page, you are hooked. Two strong, determined women seeking justice
for the past - Julie Clark has taken this theme and woven a terrific story. One that would be fun to discuss in Book Clubs.
Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Jenn W. (Denver, CO)

Lies, Lies and Lies
I must have enjoyed this book as I read it in two days. It is about two women; Meg, a con artist and Kat, a journalist trying to expose her. Meg is unapologetic and tough yet empathetic. Kat is determined and strong. Both are on a mission and will do anything they can to accomplish it. Lying starts out as a necessary evil and then becomes all encompassing. It is a game of cat and mouse, but who is the cat and who is the mouse?
Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Madeline (Florida)

The Lies I Tell
This is a taut, suspenseful cat-and-mouse chase where the roles of 'cat' and 'mouse' are constantly shifting. It will have you guessing - and second-guessing! - all the way through. Another winner by Julie Clark!
Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Bev C. (Latrobe, PA)

The Lies I Tell
Meg Williams, grifter, living by the girl code. ("We have to look out for each other because no one else will.")

Kat Roberts, journalist, obsessed with exposing her.

Lies pepper the lives of these two complicated women who forge a bond, despite painful pasts and desires that draw a fine line between justice and revenge.

This is an interesting exploration of their psyches and the forces that molded them.
Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Lynn R. (Dixon, IL)

Web of Lies
This is a difficult book to review without spoilers. The format of the book tells a web of lies through the characters of Meg and Kat. The alternate voices for each chapter and the time shifts can be confusing if read in small doses. The gambling addiction element of one of the characters is important to the story line but not very convincing. Overall, I did like the book. I enjoyed Julie Clark's first novel and this second novel did not disappoint.
Rated 3 of 5 of 5 by Joy E. (Rockville, MD)

Sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.
Suspense novels require tension, anticipation and uncertainty. The Lies I Tell by Julie Clark supplies all of those. But if you look under the covers just a little, you find that like Lewis Carroll's Alice, you have to believe six impossible things, if not before breakfast, at least before you finish the book. The female protagonists are lying about who they are and what they are doing, consistently fooling people. The plot clicks along, with some intriguing cons. But when you unpack each falsehood, you start to wonder how so many men (and all the targets are men) could fall for so many ridiculous tricks. A good plot outline but with no there, there.
Rated 3 of 5 of 5 by Connie K. (Oldsmar, FL)

Meaty Premise Vegan Delivery
Wanted to love this book. Revenge! Justice for the unjustified male bullies and opportunists! Well, while some of Meg's grifter shenanigans were well plotted, amusing, and quite interesting, the overall story seemed to lack the needed suspense. Her desired endgame was known from the very beginning. The format of switching chapters between Meg and Kat should have worked better but sometimes foreshadowing or sequencing seemed off between the two. Hard not to give examples without spoilers so I'll just say this book definitely has good points - sections of good writing - and is not a bad read by any means, but for me it just needed tightening up to be the suspenseful page turner I was expecting.


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