Everything Is Lies by Helen Callaghan – A Review

Publisher: Michael Joseph/Penguin (with thanks for the advanced review copy)

Publication Date: 22nd February 2018

Wowsers! Authors of psychological thrillers are really upping their game! I’d grown a little tired of the whole missing child/domestic violence tropes and had veered away slightly from the whole thriller genre for a while there but Everything Is Lies has really pepped me right back up!

The blurb of this one intrigued me from the off. I skim read it through one eye as I didn’t want to go into the story knowing too much. What I did know was this;

A young woman returns to her parents home to find her mother hanging dead from a tree in the garden and her father lying in a pool of his own blood near deaths door.

I mean come on!…that’s enough to draw you in, right?

The first line ‘No one is who they say they are’ is another instant hook. In fact I posted a picture of the first paragraph of this book on IG and instantly had people asking ‘what book is this?! I need to carry on reading!’

Sophia is the young woman who receives a strange phone call from her mother one night asking her to come home to talk, which she dismisses and passes off as non-urgent as she’s out with her work friends having far too good a time to concern herself with her parents.

When she does guiltily return to her parents house she makes the grim discovery. Now, I don’t know if this makes me strange but I really enjoyed the description of the discovery. The anticipation and suspense was palpable. I knew what she was going to stumble across (it’s right there in the blurb!) BUT my heart was well and truly in my mouth.

The police assume a murder suicide. Nina (Sophia’s mother) having stabbed her husband Jared and then hung herself. Sophia is utterly against this theory, feeling that her quiet, unassuming mother would never harm her father let alone commit suicide.

Sophia takes it upon herself to investigate what has happened at the house. Who was responsible for a recent spate of break-ins at the house and why did her parents decide not to tell her?

During her investigations Sophia discovers that her mother had been in the process of writing a book, which had been picked up by a publisher. The discovery of her mother’s notebooks takes Sophia back in time to her mothers late teens and her life at Morningstar.

But just where and what was ‘Morningstar’? And what events had happened to her in her past which had now impacted the future?

I really enjoyed the chapters told in Nina’s voice through her manuscript. More so than Sophia’s present day story (even though this was immensely readable too).

This book kept me guessing all the way through. It was a real rollercoaster ride! The pacing was just perfect. I raced through it in two days, not really wanting to put it down at all.

This book deals with secrets, hidden pasts, cults, peer pressure, fitting in and trying to find your own identity.

I think it’s the best thriller I’ve read in a long time. I have to confess I hadn’t read the authors other book Dear Amy which also received great acclaim but after reading Everything Is Lies I am definitely getting myself a copy.

See you soon.

Bookish Chat. Xxx

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