Monday, 19 December 2016

Book Review - "A Suitable Lie" by Michael J. Malone.




Young widow, Andy Boyd is blown away by the beautiful Anna and sees his life finally turning around.  He has hidden away from the social scene since his wife died and now he has a wife and a mother for his young son.  Cracks begin to show as early as the wedding night and it is not long before things get out of control.  But why can't he walk away?

We have all read about women who stay in violent relationships, clinging on to the hope that their partners might change.  Love is a powerful drug and defies all logic.  But it is rare to hear of domestic violence from the male perspective.  Michael J. Malone has addressed the issue in this deeply disturbing and thrilling novel.  Andy is a big man.  A strapping rugby player, he towers over Anna and would never hurt a fly.  Yet he finds himself cowering in corners and walking the streets in his dressing gown rather than face up to the woman he loves.  A man can't hit a woman, right? But he can dream of strangling her to death?  How far can a person be pushed before they crack?  What happens when there are children involved? 

This domestic-noir title starts with a single page prologue that gives you goosebumps.  Malone  introduces Andy, father of four-year-old Pat and paints the picture of a grieving man who just needs to move on.  A big softie, he has a great relationship with his Mum and brother but definitely needs to get out more.  A whirlwind romance with the enigmatic Anna sees a second chance at family life and the reader roots for him.. It's not long before we are punched in the proverbial gut and see the gentle giant turn into a former shell of himself.  Family and friends have no idea why Andy is changing and when money disappears in work, things get out of control. This is a read-in- a-couple-of-sittings book with  the tension present from the early stages and maintained throughout.  There are twists and sub-plots, but the chilling feeling is what hooked me.  Set in a coastal Scottish town, the atmosphere is sharp and crispy with colloquial phrases adding more authenticity.  There were a few things I saw coming, but also plenty I didn't. Anna is one of those characters you will love to hate and there will be many times you will wonder why Andy did not just leave.  Just like all the women who have been abused for years and years, Andy shows that all is not black and white.  It is not as easy as we would like to think.  Not everyone can escape easily. How far would you have to be pushed before revealing your secret? My guess is a lot, if you are male...

A fantastic read, ideal for fans of SJ Watson and Sophie Hannah.  

A Suitable Lie is published by Orenda Books in PB and ebook format.  You can order via amazon link below:

2 comments:

  1. Great stuff! Thank you for your thoughtful review. It is very much appreciated. Cheers!

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    Replies
    1. I loved the setting! Great atmosphere that makes me want to visit now. Looking forward to reading more of your work in the future.
      M xx

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