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Beautiful Lies    by Lisa Unger order for
Beautiful Lies
by Lisa Unger
Order:  USA  Can
Three Rivers, 2006 (2006)
Hardcover, Softcover, CD, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Do not – I repeat, do not – open Lisa Unger's Beautiful Lies unless you have large blocks of time to read it. It has to be the hardest book to put down that I have read in many a year.

A random act of heroism by Ridley Jones puts her in an uncomfortable limelight in the press and TV news. Her life starts to unravel as seemingly unrelated occurrences meld together to form a terrifying series of attempts at her life. She begins to question her background and the life she has lived. Has she led a life of lies? Albeit beautiful lies, but lies nonetheless.

Who is there for her to trust? Each time she attempts to find answers, she is foiled by loved ones. Her new lover Jake is everything her ex-fiancé never was; concerned for her welfare instead of openly attempting to orchestrate her every move. There are missing babies, murdered mothers, lives lived in terror - a plethora of incidents that would make anyone question their thinking.

Beautiful Lives moves at breakneck speed with razor-sharp clarity. It's a tale that twists and turns at every opportunity with mind-boggling results. It features wonderful, reflecting characters, all with their own agendas. Unger's thought processes prove to be deep with a revelation of the human psyche that does not hamper the action of a very well-written book.

I have Lisa Unger's next book, A Sliver of Truth, at hand and intend to get to it as soon as I can. It's worthy, I'm sure, of a blazing fireplace, a glass of wine, a wonderful piece of gorgonzola cheese on a baguette, and time to spend on a good read.

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