Sweet Little Lies
By: Caz Frear
Thriller, Crime Fiction
Published: August 14th, 2018
From the Cover
In this gripping debut procedural, a young London policewoman must probe dark secrets buried deep in her own family’s past to solve a murder and a long-ago disappearance.
Your father is a liar. But is he a killer?
Even liars tell the truth . . . sometimes.
Twenty-six-year-old Cat Kinsella overcame a troubled childhood to become a Detective Constable with the Metropolitan Police Force, but she’s never been able to banish these ghosts. When she’s called to the scene of a murder in Islington, not far from the pub her estranged father still runs, she discovers that Alice Lapaine, a young housewife who didn’t get out much, has been found strangled.
Cat and her team immediately suspect Alice’s husband, until she receives a mysterious phone call that links the victim to Maryanne Doyle, a teenage girl who went missing in Ireland eighteen years earlier. The call raises uneasy memories for Cat—her family met Maryanne while on holiday, right before she vanished. Though she was only a child, Cat knew that her charming but dissolute father wasn’t telling the truth when he denied knowing anything about Maryanne or her disappearance. Did her father do something to the teenage girl all those years ago? Could he have harmed Alice now? And how can you trust a liar even if he might be telling the truth?
Determined to close the two cases, Cat rushes headlong into the investigation, crossing ethical lines and trampling professional codes. But in looking into the past, she might not like what she finds. . . .
I loved reading all of Tana French’s novels and this book felt very familiar, but still unique. I enjoyed the switching between past and present as Frear weaved Kinsella’s story. Like with so many other thrillers, I had an idea of what I thought was going to happen and “whodunnit” . . . but I was wrong. Sweet Little Lies kept me engaged and guessing throughout the entire novel. There were parts in the middle where I felt the plot seemed to drag. By the last quarter of the book, however, you won’t want to put it down.
I love crime fiction novels that feel well-researched. There is something about authors going the extra inch to make the plot feel real that makes me appreciate books like this more. My only complaint with this book is that the plot seemed almost too far-fetched–the connections and twists seemed almost unrealistic. I don’t think it detracted from my overall view of the the book.
One of the greatest parts of a thriller (in my opinion) are the characters–the more flawed they are, the better. Frear packs this novel with plenty of flawed characters. Just when you expect someone to be reliable and “normal,” just wait; give it a few more chapters and that character will surprise you (or not).
This is Frear’s debut novel, which is really exciting. If his future novels are anything like Sweet Little Lies, I know I will not be disappointed.
Real Life Thrillers Reading thrillers and crime fiction has changed how I approach everyday life. For example, someone must know at all times where I am and what I’m doing, or I must be with someone else (#alibi); I don’t look at my phone if I’m walking alone in the dark down the street or in a parking lot; I always park my car under a street light or near a well-lit entrance; if I know I will be driving alone at night, I always make sure I have plenty of gas and my phone is charged; and I always keep my location services in my phone on 24/7 just in case I get abducted so investigators can ping my last location. Maybe I’m slightly crazy, maybe I’m over cautious, maybe I’m smart. Idk. Sometimes, as a female you can never be too cautious.