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18 September 2013

Review: 'The Lies You Told Me' by Jessica Ruston (2013)

'I do not know what you have been told about your mother. But I know it cannot be the truth...' 

Klara Mortimer never really knew her mother, Sadie, a former model, who left when she was just six years old. All she has is a handful of stories, passed down from the father who raised her. Klara tells herself she has long ago come to terms with her mother's disappearance from her life, but then she receives a note and key from someone who calls themselves 'N.R.'. These lead her to a garage, full of the remnants of her mother's past, and to the diary she kept all those years ago. Within its pages, Klara discovers a woman who doesn't quite match the portrait her father has painstakingly painted for her, and a story that leads her to question everything she thought she knew...

Jessica Ruston’s August 2013 release ‘The Lies You Told Me’ is one of those novels that show why I love being a book blogger as much as I do. I hadn’t read anything by Jessica Ruston before, the cover of ‘The Lies You Told Me’ hadn’t particularly caught my attention, neither had the blurb, until I received a review copy of this novel, thanks to the lovely people at Headline. Sometimes you need to pick up books that might not have been part of your usual to-read list, but provide you with the opportunity to try something new, something different, something that reminds you to step out of your comfort zone every now and again in order to discover what you perhaps had simply looked over at first. 

Klara Mortimer was just a little girl when her mother suddenly disappeared out of her life, leaving her behind with only her father to take care of her. Now, as she is older, all Klara has left of her mother are her own memories and her father’s stories. Until she unexpectedly receives a key in the mail with a note that leads her to a storage room. In here, Klara finds several missing pieces of the puzzle that is her mother’s life, including her mother’s own personal diary. Klara doesn’t want to share her findings with anyone else, and slowly she becomes obsessed with discovering what kind of person her mother was and what truly happened to her all those years ago... 

The story is told from two perspectives: Klara in the modern day and age, and Sadie (Klara’s mother) in 1950s London. I was immediately captivated by Sadie and her story, which is centred around her dream to become a famous model. She is such a determined young woman, and I really felt myself going along with her rollercoaster of emotions. I loved switching between these two voices and finding out more about Sadie with every page I turned. Occasionally I found myself getting a bit frustrated by Klara’s behaviour, but at the same time I have never been in a situation like hers, and everyone reacts differently to certain events, sometimes in unexplainable ways, which is something that also comes back in the novel. One of the strengths of the novel is also that even though I did not particularly really warm to Klara, I was definitely interested by her story and wanted to find out what would happen to her and her search for her mother’s identity.

There’s definitely a mysterious side to this novel: who sends Klara the key to the storage room? What happened to Sadie? Why did she suddenly disappear? Will Klara be able to find all the pieces of the puzzle? All these questions made me want to keep on reading in order to find out more. The novel focuses on memories, secrets, lies, and what kind of effect these things can have on you, and this is something that really fascinated me. ‘The Lies You Told Me’ is a slightly mysterious and compelling novel that will have you hooked from the first page until the very last words, so make sure you have a couple of free hours before opening this book!


1 comment:

  1. oh i love it when a review book turns out to be exactly what you was looking for without ever realising!

    Emily @