The Lie She Told by Catherine Yaffe

Thank you to the author, publisher and Rachel’s Random Resources for the digital advance reader copy of this book in return for my honest opinion.

Here’s the blurb:

All Kate wanted was a peaceful life.

All Ryan wanted to do was destroy it.

Living in the remote Scottish Highlands under Witness Protection, life is finally happy for Kate Ward and her young son Joe, until someone from Kate’s past appears. Ryan Albright is the only person that knows all of Kate’s secrets, and what she had to do to escape her previous abusive relationship. Ryan is determined to complete the mission set for him by Kate’s ex-husband. Systematically and violently, he pulls Kate’s new world apart with devasting consequences for everyone around him, including Kate who must face up to the lie she told.

Now, here’s my review: I started this book thinking I’d dip in and out of it over a few days but ended up reading it into the night as I couldn’t put it down! The characters were well-developed and there were only as many as were actually needed for the plot itself. Too many minor characters is one of my pet peeves when I’m reading a novel so I really enjoyed this aspect of the author’s writing.

It’s not until the very end that the reader finds out what the lie Kate told actually was, although there were a couple of hints along the way. Ryan was a manipulative, vile character and at one point I found myself telling Kate what I thought of her when she kept ignoring her gut instinct and letting him wriggle his measly way further into her life (the cats were not impressed and there was dramatic tutting from the poetry bookshelves). Jack was my favourite character, an older gentleman who helped Kate find her feet in the little Scottish village and inviting her to own part of the cafe he runs. Reading the story from both Kate and Ryan’s perspectives really helped build up the tension as the reader knows what he has planned and has no way of stopping events from running their course.

I was intrigued about DI Ziggy Thorne, who has only a couple of brief appearances in the novel and I hope to see more of him in future novels (please tell me there are future novels?!). Catherine Yaffe handled the relationships between different characters skilfully and her novel serves as a reminder of how fine the line can be between trust, history, jealousy and love. I had to have a strong word with myself to hold back on judging Kate too harshly as she falls for Ryan, because her character only saw the side he presented whereas the omnipotent reader saw the true evil intent and actions when nobody was watching.

I’m giving this a 4 star rating and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys a thriller with truly villainous bad guys and a secret that’s kept hidden inside.

Rating: 4 out of 5.