Release Date: 07/09/13
In the tradition of Lisa Unger’s Beautiful Lies and Nancy Pickard’s The Scent of Rain and Lightning comes a twisting, riveting novel of shifting trust and shattered lives. Lie Still delves deep into the heart of an opulent Southern town, where gossip is currency and secrets kill.
When Emily Page and her husband move from Manhattan to the wealthy enclave of Clairmont, Texas, she hopes she can finally escape her haunted past—and outrun the nameless stalker who has been taunting her for years. Pregnant with her first child, Emily just wants to start over. But as she is drawn into a nest of secretive Texas women—and into the unnerving company of their queen, Caroline Warwick—Emily finds that acceptance is a very dangerous game.
It isn’t long before Caroline mysteriously disappears and Emily is facing a rash of anonymous threats. Are they linked to the missing Caroline? Or to Emily’s terrifying encounter in college, years earlier? As the dark truth about Caroline emerges, Emily realizes that some secrets are impossible to hide—and that whoever came for Caroline is now coming for her.
My thoughts on the book:
Lie Still is not the type of book that I'd normally pick up. As you guys know, I much prefer paranormal to "real life" type novels, but this one stood out to me, so I requested it anyway. I was not disappointed. Lie Still addresses many important issues surrounding contemporary society all while keeping the reader hooked with an intriguing plot and sympathetic, albeit flawed, characters. I was kept on the edge of my seat for this entire book, and I could not put it down. If you're looking for captivating and thrilling mystery, then look no further.
I really connected with Emily and felt badly for her throughout the novel. I also admired her for her strength and tenacity. She does not let her past define her, and she moves on to make a life for herself in spite of it. Emily is a well-developed and intriguing character. The secondary characters in this novel also stood out and were extremely realistic. Caroline, the "mean girl" in this group is very multi-faceted, as are the others. I really enjoyed the contrast between people like Letty (pageant queen, anyone?) and Caroline and Emily. It showed just how different people can be and how people will ignore those differences in the name of social acceptance.
The plot was nothing short of an emotional roller coaster, and Heaberlin wastes no time diving right in, showing the reader Emily's date rape. The detail of the scene was a bit much for me (if reading about things like that bother you, then you may want to skip this book), but it was clear from that scene that Heaberlin is a master of showing instead of telling. I pushed on through the scene and was rewarded with an unforgettable mystery. Also, it was obvious that Heaberlin is addressing a very important issue with this rape, and the way she detailed it was to help people who haven't suffered through an experience like that one to understand the ones who have. This scene was not for "entertainment value," that's for sure.
I found the setting itself to be extremely realistic, and as someone who grew up in the south and dealt with petty crap most of my life, I can attest that this is what life there is like. The fake niceness and cliques fit in with what I experienced and saw while I lived there. To this day, the people who go to a certain church in the town in which I grew up are treated much better than the people who don't. It's ridiculous and childish, but it is what it is. This book really touched on the issues of small town, southern life, and I'm glad that someone was finally honest and open about it. The writing itself is done beautifully, and the prose is absolutely captivating. The pacing is spot-on, and the ending ties up all the loose ends.
Overall, I'd recommend this book to people who enjoy good mysteries, intriguing characters, and wonderful writing. This novel addresses some very important issues, and I commend Heaberlin for having the nerve to address them in a public forum. If you're looking for a good, but very serious, read, then this book is for you.
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