Sunday, January 26, 2020

Review: The Better Liar by Tanen Jones

Title: The Better Liar
Author: Tanen Jones
Published: January 2020, Ballentine Books
Format: ARC E-copy, 307 pages
Source: Netgalley

When a woman conceals her sister's death to claim their joint inheritance, her deception exposes a web of dangerous secrets in this addictive new thriller for fans of Megan Abbott, Gillian Flynn, and Paula Hawkins.

"Like most of the dead, I want to be remembered."

Robin Voigt is dead. If her sister Leslie had arrived at her cramped Las Vegas apartment just hours earlier, this would have been their first reunion in a decade. In the years since Robin ran away from home as a teenager, Leslie has stayed in New Mexico, taking care of their dying father, even as she began building a family of her own. But when their father passed away, Leslie received a rude awakening: she and Robin must receive the $100,000 he left them together--or not at all. Now that money may be beyond her grasp. And unbeknownst to anyone, even her husband, Leslie needs her inheritance desperately.

When she meets a charismatic young woman who bears an uncanny resemblance to Robin--and has every reason to leave her past behind--the two make a reckless bargain: Mary will impersonate Robin for a week in exchange for Robin's half of the cash. But neither realizes how high the stakes will be when Mary takes a dead woman's name. Even as Mary begins to suspect Leslie is hiding something, and Leslie realizes the stranger living in her house, babysitting her newborn son, and charming her husband has secrets of her own, Robin's wild, troubled legacy threatens to eclipse them both.

An electric, twisted portrait of sisterhood and the ties that bind, The Better Liar is a stunning debut with a heart-stopping, twist-after-twist finale that will beg the question: How far would you go to get what's yours?

My thoughts: I'm a big fan of thrillers, that should come as no surprise to anyone who knows me and my reading tastes. And as someone who reads so many, it's hard to be constantly wowed and completely floored, yet I totally was with this debut novel.

This book wasn't even on my radar until a friend raved about it - a friend I might add who has been less than pleased with this genre - told me I needed to get my hands on this book. Well, that pretty much sold me on it and I'm so glad I requested it, because it really is a book that deserves all the praise. This book completely hooked me right from the start and while I did have my theories, as I kept reading, the twists and turns had me second guessing myself time and again.

This is a dark, twisted game of cat and mouse and I loved every second of it. It's also a book chock full of lies and deceit and one where you won't know who to trust. The unease exudes from the pages as you get deeper into the book and the tension rises ever so slowly. 

A totally addicting and binge-worthy read, this book is one I have not stopped thinking about since I finished reading it. And I so appreciate the author's note at the end...but make sure to read this after you read the book. Tanen Jones has created one cleverly crafted novel and I know for sure I will be eager to see what she writes next. Have you read this one yet?



  1. Kristin, I'm so glad you found this book to be so addicting and binge-worthy! It's new to me.
    Have a good week ahead!

  2. This sounds twisted definitely. I read another story similar to this one, where the deception of a sister was carried out by a wily clever teenager. That one too was very intriguing. Thank you for this review.


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