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She nails This is a 3-star read that ended up getting bumped down to 2 in the final chapters. She nails the medical stuff, it's obvious she's comfortable there, but the way Zoe investigates her history feels false and weird so do the subplots with her former boyfriend and new prospective love interest. Zoe finds someone on Facebook that she wants to get information from, drives to their house, then finds out on arriving the person is dead.

Anyone who has been on Facebook for more than a little while would find that sentence kind of laughable. Any dead person on Facebook has a wall plastered in memorials, it would be impossible to miss. Plus no one shares their address publicly. I could've forgiven those flaws but the ending itself felt manipulative and like my chain had just been yanked. I think Block has potential, but I'd like to see her make her plot more organic.

Her scenes in the hospital also ring so much more true than any others in the book. Jul 25, Icewineanne rated it liked it Shelves: This is an enjoyable story about a resident trainee psychiatrist. Although it is a mystery, that seems to be almost secondary to the story of the main character's Zoe life as a resident in a Buffalo area hospital. A large focus is on the relationships that she has with her co-workers, patients, and her adoptive mother, who is now in a nursing home with dementia. The mystery involves a mysterious dream that keeps haunting Zoe and the questions about her natural mother's death.

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Although the myst This is an enjoyable story about a resident trainee psychiatrist. Although the mystery was somewhat interesting, what kept me reading were the other aspects of the story. Sandra Block brought insight and humour to these scenes and to the day to day life of a resident. The mystery itself has a few holes, but because of the other storylines in the book, I wasn't overly bothered by any of them. I'm looking forward to Sandra Block's next novel.

Oct 27, Albert rated it really liked it. Little Black Lies by Sandra Block is a psychological thriller that sets a tempo and pace that will draw you in slowly until like a literary anaconda, it takes you in its coils and squeezes you until it makes you its own. Little Black Lies heralds a new series by a talented new voice in this genre. One that takes her place, with authority in the genre.


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She rubs her arms. Ready to go back in? I have to get home to s Little Black Lies by Sandra Block is a psychological thriller that sets a tempo and pace that will draw you in slowly until like a literary anaconda, it takes you in its coils and squeezes you until it makes you its own. I have to get home to study anyway.

So we wind our way back into the Victorian palace, past the disinfectant smells, the nurses laughing at their station, back to Mom's small, rose-pink-carpeted room, with her roommate mercifully gone. I smooth the blanket around her and gather up my things. I stare at her a moment as she descends right into sleep, her breath evening into a soft snore. I jiggle my car keys, debating, but don't have the heart to wake her. And the whole drive home the name burrows itself in my head: Who the hell is Tanya Zoe Goldman is a resident in training, working with her patients in the psychiatric ward of the hospital.

But Zoe has plenty of her own mental and emotional issues. An adoptive mother who is slowly fading away in a retirement home. The keys to her past and her birth family fading with her. A boyfriend whose sense of fidelity and love are as fleeting as the time he gives Zoe. An incredibly demanding career that take of the most of her life, and her own therapy sessions that deal with dreams and memories of a prior existence. Of a little girl hiding from a horrible creature, of blood and death. Becoming obsessed with her birth mother, she digs into her past and finds that the carefully woven tale of her life has been a web of deceit and lies.

The little girl she was led to believe she was never existed and with her adoptive mother's increasing dementia, she finds the opportunity to learn the truth drifting away. Into this time comes a new patient, a sociopath, institutionalized for years. The new patient Sofia Vallano, is not what a murderess should look like. Quiet and demure, she spends her time with her art and with Zoe. She looks little like the fourteen year old girl who killed her own mother. It turns out that matricide is less common than you might think, if you thought about it much to begin with.

Only a handful of cases per year. Infanticide has a much higher rate, though it's an undeniably easier affair. A couple of pounds of screaming newborn versus a hundred-plus-pounder who has raised you form birth Who really is Sofia and what can she possibly know of Zoe's missing past. As Zoe begins to recall what had happened when she was a child, along with the memory, comes the danger of the past. Little Black Lies is a tense atmospheric thriller that builds and moves with a steady ebb, dropping clues and questions as it weaves a tight little mystery of loss and deceit.

Who is Zoe really? That is center to this tale. Her past locked away in the fading memory of her adoptive mother. Her dementia closing and locking the doors to the truth of what once was. Her dreams and memories of a bloody and terrifying night. Block does an amazing job of weaving this tale, you will find it hard to believe this is her debut.

The character of Zoe is one you will fall for. A terrific novel and a writer to be followed! Jan 10, Gina rated it liked it Shelves: This is just an ok book about a psychiatrist, Zoe Goldman, who was raised by adoptive parents after, what she was told, her real mother died in a fire. Now Zoe's adoptive mother is fading away into dementia and for some reason Zoe begins doubting the story about her birth mother.

As her adoptive mother's memories fade, and as Zoe finds clues that show her that the story just doesn't add up, she is in a race to find out who her real mother is before it's too late. While trying to figure out her o This is just an ok book about a psychiatrist, Zoe Goldman, who was raised by adoptive parents after, what she was told, her real mother died in a fire.

While trying to figure out her own mystery, Zoe has been given a new patient, Sofia Valerno. She has been institutionalized since she was a teen for killing her mother and the attempted homicide of her brother. Now the doctors must decide if Sofia is ready for release back into society. For some reason, Zoe has this nagging doubt about Sofia even though she has shown exemplary behavior at the hospital.

Zoe just can't get her out of her head and she doesn't know why. With a heavy handed psychiatric treatments and story lines along the Freudian line- mother issues, subconscious, dreams, hypnosis- this is not a psychiatric book. This is a normal everyday book that anyone could read. It moves very slow. It took me quite awhile to read it. I didn't connect with the characters at all. They were written all very superficially. Maybe she should stick to writing in medical journals.

Jan 12, Heather rated it it was amazing. I loved, loved this book and highly recommend it. It doesn't come out until February, so you have a chance to buy it ahead of time now. I was lucky enough to receive and Advanced Reading Copy. The story takes place mostly in a psychiatric ward with Dr. Zoe Goldman, a resident in training, as the heroine. Not only is she faced with problem patients daily, but she has her own skeletons in the closet.

She wants to know what exactly happened to her birth mother. Her adoptive mother knows or knew, bu I loved, loved this book and highly recommend it. Her adoptive mother knows or knew, but now is in the throes of dementia so Zoe never knows if what her adopted mother tells her is true or not. That's the only part of the plot I think I should reveal. Block's debut novel and a hard hitting, intriguing, page-turning one at that.

She draws three-dimensional characters, manages several plot threads masterfully and will keep you on the edge of your seat. Keep the lights on when you read this one. Mar 01, Kate Moretti rated it it was amazing. I love any type of psychological thriller, but this one actually took place in a psych hospital so it gave it that extra little oomph for me.

Zoe Goldman is an exceptional character: Clearly Block knows her psychiatric disorders she IS a neurologist, after all. The mystery was compelling and the writing was top notch! Mar 07, Tamara rated it really liked it Shelves: Little Black Lies Dr. Zoe Goldman is a resident in training at the local psychiatric ward. Helping people is something that gives her joy- and she feels that she is good at her job. Even though she definitely picks up on the fact that one her supervisors is not always her biggest fan.

When Zoe meets Sophia Vallano- her newest patient- she has a dislike to the girl. But she puts on a professiona Review Originally Posted: But she puts on a professional face and deals with Sophia as best she can. Although when talk begins to happen about releasing Sophia- Zoe is reluctant to think this is the best course of action. Zoe begins to find out, though, that some secrets are best kept in the past. And that some lies are told with the best intentions at the heart of them. And, ok, the cover- hello the cover! Maybe it was because there were some aspects that I felt did not need as much space given as they were again Jean Luc, even Eddie- he was mentioned so many times, my Spidey sense was tingling about him!

I thought this was fairly well plotted out especially for a debut novel. The idea definitely had merit! I was definitely pleased with this book. All thoughts and opinions are mine alone. Mar 27, Kelly rated it really liked it Shelves: I thoroughly enjoyed this debut novel and am looking forward to reading the next in the series. Zoe Goldman is working in Buffalo as a psychiatric resident. She is haunted by dreams of a fire where she lost her mother. Zoe was raised by an adoptive mother, but can remember very little about her biological family.

She is struggling with this, the loss of a boyfriends, and her ADHD. I think there was a little too much emphasis on the ADHD. I found it annoying at times. Otherwise, this book moved a I thoroughly enjoyed this debut novel and am looking forward to reading the next in the series. Otherwise, this book moved along well and was very readable. Such was the case with my introduction to the Zoe Goldman series.

I was intrigued by the setting, written by an author who obviously knows psychiatric residency well, and was quickly caught up in the story. I didn't see the surprise twist coming at the end, and I'm usually good at guessing endings. Highly recommended for anyone who loves a good story. May 09, Stacey Kade added it Shelves: Dec 11, Ali Mark rated it it was amazing. Read more reviews at http: But when she moves home, she is reminded of the fire that took the life of her mother, and so she begins on a journey with her psychiatrist, her brother and mom, and the on-again-off-again boyfriend.

But what she discovers on the search to find out about her biological family could put her life in extreme danger. Goodreads readers ranked this book a 3. I was heart-broken with two things throughout this book I'd love to see a sequel to this book and the expansion of the end of this story, which seems to disappoint some on Goodreads. I know that isn't a satisfactory answer, so we'll start with the character development. When you're dealing with mental disorders, it's important to highlight the person first, and the disorder second, and this book does this all at the same time as they are simply secondary characters.

Which leads me into the purpose and presence of the secondary characters in this book - they're extremely prevalent, and they're done in a way that they matter, but they don't overshadow the importance of the main characters. The psychobabble was done really well - it made sense and maybe it's because I have a minor in psychology, or maybe it's because I have been on too many of the medications listed in this book , but simply put - anyone could've skimmed through the disorders and through the medications listed and still have a complete understanding of the book itself.

The details help you really explore every step of the journey that Zoe is going on - from the curiosity, to the exploration and searching, the pain, and the triumph. The mystery in this book made it a psychological thriller, and I'm not sure if I was having some minor heart palpitations or if I, too, needed a Xanax to ease the evening. But, Sandra Block wrote this book in a way that makes it impossible to read "just one more chapter" before bed. The detail may be overwhelming for some.

If you don't want to feel like you know every detail of Zoe's life, it may just be worth skipping half the book. Jan 20, Serenity rated it really liked it Shelves: All of those clues. Despite the fact that I figured out the twist before I was meant to I still really loved this book.

A new favorite for sure. It was well written and I loved all of the characters. It was amazing how everything tied together— the author definitely thought it through and explained everything very well. It is hard to review this one without giving up the plot. Goldman who has issues of her own stemming from a childhood trauma is treating psych patien.

Apr 19, Melody rated it liked it. This first novel by Sandra Block is a story about Freudian nightmare and the dark side of memories, family and the strain and bond that connect us all, as well as the discovery of one's own empathy. Zoe Goldman is a resident in training in a psychiatric ward in Buffalo, New York. Aside from tending to troubled patients, she is intrigued by a new patient who murdered her mother.

While Sofia's case is disturbing, Zoe on the other end has her own baggage; she was adopted and she wants to know w This first novel by Sandra Block is a story about Freudian nightmare and the dark side of memories, family and the strain and bond that connect us all, as well as the discovery of one's own empathy. While Sofia's case is disturbing, Zoe on the other end has her own baggage; she was adopted and she wants to know why and how her biological mother passed, especially she has been plagued by nightmares of a fire during her childhood.

To complicate matters, her adoptive mother loses her memory to dementia and she has to rely on her own to search for the answers. Of course we all know that the truth might not be pleasant and what we know might hurt us; so ultimately Zoe would find out the truth surrounding her past and well, what a surprise it was.

I read Little Black Lies with no idea where this story would take me so I enjoyed that moment of having the story unveiling itself to me. Zoe was an interesting character with some emotional baggage. Overall, the story was intriguing but I thought there's still room for improvement concerning the characters' development.

I pop the pill into my mouth and climb back in bed. My brain slows to a thrum, listening to the Xanax. Arms jelly, legs jelly, brain jelly, melting into the bed. But before I fade off, the finest gossamer of a thought sticks in my brain like a burr. After twenty years, why am I dreaming about the fire? For this, no lie seems to be too big or too black. It seems she will do anything, anything at all, to keep that in crowd believing that she is a sophisticated and rich young woman whose roots are in London, England, rather than Lundon, Massachusetts.

She concocts an elaborate history of fake parents with fake professions, even while her father passes her in the school halls, cleaning, cleaning, cleaning away the dirt that keeps coming back. Sara works hard to belong with her female peers, is much less concerned with the opposite sex in terms of acceptance, until Leo catches her eye. For this crush, she falls even deeper into lies, and becomes willing to risk her life rather than be found out. A climactic scene unfolds when Charlie, her father, finally breaks down and spins out of control with his OCD. A human being can take only so much stress before the cracks finally begin to show.

Sooner or later, one way or another, all lies surface. At the doorway, more teachers have gathered and are herding the students down the hall. I slip past them into the laboratory…. Just removes the cap, douses his cloth in fluid, and wipes the sink with it. He stands back and watches the sink go from shiny and silver with wetness, back to mottled and dusty-looking silver.

The sound of the microbes screaming, dying, is nearly audible, and right away I see his jaw slacken and relax. Predictably, Sara gets found out. After her ever more extreme and desperate manipulations, the mask falls and reveals the vulnerable and hurting and deeply insecure girl inside. By the time that it does, some readers may have lost all ability to forgive.

Wounded as she herself is, she has left a trail of victims: By end of book, it occurs to me that girls especially are today going to greater and greater lengths to please not boys, but other girls, trying to find love and acceptance that broken families have denied them. Teen females are dressing and behaving in a manner that makes it impossible not to objectify them—and Cohen does a great job of showing us what most parents are probably trying hard not to realize about their own children: All of which is a silent scream for help, yet another societal dysfunction, that adults must heed if we are to guide our youth into a healthy adulthood.

Important issues, and Cohen does not shy away from any of them. Like it or not, these are the realities of our contemporary world. Being young has never been more complicated, more obstacle-ridden, more testing, than it is today. And many teens are navigating this complicated and confused world on their own, their parents often too obsessed with careers or their own affairs to notice.

With this, Cohen does a great service with her young adult novels. She writes books that show young adults they are not alone in their struggles.


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She reveals to adults the world they may not have realized exists. These are the black lies of a society that has too often lost track of values and lost sight of priorities. We can only be grateful for authors such as Cohen to remind us: Tish Cohen is the author of several books for adults and young readers. Apr 18, Jill Marie rated it liked it. Well, all the "popular" girls and and all the "new" girls theme is right where it has to be! Did not like how the main girl was always ashamed and pretended to be someone she's not.

It was just not one of those touching books for me. Apr 27, Katherine O rated it it was amazing. ELA Ever had to hide who you are to fit into a new environment? Have you ever been so embarrassed about a particular part of your life and past that you'd do anything to hide it beneath the ashes? And have you ever told such a large lie that it wasn't a little white lie, but more ugly, a little black lie?

If you have then you will love the book "Little black lies" by Tish Cohen. Sara is the new girl at Ant High, and things couldn't be any more complicated. But a large factor that added to all of her complications maybe was her father becoming the new janitor with OCD at Anton High. Sara had to deal with so much stress during this story, that it would even make the reader tired.

She had to keep up with a school that demanded grades as perfect as Cinderella's glass shoe. The stress of making sure that not only everyone found out that Charlie, the new janitor was related to her but even more her father, but the fact that she didn't want her father finding out she was pretending to not know him, knowing it would basically kill him inside, and seeing her father's face when he discovered the ugly truth about his daughter was too much to handle.

Guilt ate Sara through the mess, bubbling up inside her. Now, no one said keeping secrets would be easy, especially due the facts that secrets…tend to get out… specially when someone sniffs them out soon enough. Sara has undergone so many changes the past year, so many changes that have forced Sara into creating a new character for herself at this all background centered high school, a character that is such out of the range of "little white lies" into little black lies.

Making the entire Ant High population believe that your father is a rich neurosurgeon and that she has moved from London England when her dad is really the new janitor, and she's from the small town of Lundon Massachusetts. But having the whole school thinking you're just one of the rest just like Sarawanted, kept her at a high alert place, doing everything in her power to make sure no one finds out of the ugly truth that will send herpopularity crashing into the ground.

Sara wanted what everyone else in Anton High wanted, she did not want to be popular, but to fit in. She didn't want to be the outcast of the school. A school formulated upon high standard kids with enough brains to run the country, and a lifestyleto suit a royal family.

Sara knew that in a crowd of Ant students, she was the undercover outcast. She didn't want anyone finding out that herfather was the new janitor everyone joked about. She also didn't want anyone finding out about her past ,that was made up of enough secrets,and tears to bring anyone down.

So Sara did the unthinkable to make sure that no one ever found out about the fact that her father was the weird new janitor or thatshe lived on the top of an old hardware store. Sara created a new character for herself, lying to everything and everyone that stepped in her path.

Soon Sara Black had transformed herself into the unthinkable, she had transformed herself into one of the populars. But was being friendswith Carling Burnack worth the trouble when she added so much more stress into the already high balanced life? Sara sure thought so, puttingup with everything Carling set in her path, and maybe Sara becoming thenew Carling Burnack sidekick creates her many enemies, from all sides.

Sara is forced to give up everything to keep her secret and new identityhidden beneath the ashes, even giving up your first love I found the book "Little Black Lies" by Tish Cohen to be such an emotional and exciting book to read. As I read and moved on throughthe book I became more and more excited aboutwhat was going to occurr next.

This book has deeper meaning hidden beneath the words though. This book shows that no matter how changing who you are to fit in isn't worth it, specially when you are hiding such critical parts that make up whom you really are.

Little Black Lies by Sharon J. Bolton

Sara everything that was her, and everything that made up her life to fit into the crowd. But more importantly forher friendship with the most popular girl in the school, Carling to stay intact. But hiding who you are never turns out well, and especiallyfor thislittle liar. No matter how hard Sara tries, in the end everything collapses in the most unpredictable ways, in ways unimaginable.

I recommendthis book to anyone who is searching for a story about trying to fit into a completely different environment by hiding your entire life story, andwho you are. I would also recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a high climax story filled with lies, secrets, and the heart shreddingtruth. Now, lies are meant to be unveiled at some point, specially with Sara in the lead.

Aug 15, Randy rated it it was amazing. Columbine and Little Black Lies Transitioning between reading books can be difficult, especially when moving from something intensely dark and thick with facts to a far lighter read, such as a young adult YA book with a partially pink cover. Or, you may be surprised by their connective tissue. In Columbine, Dave Cullen methodically and with breath-holding tension scrutinizes the signposts that might have foretold the ongoing horror enacted at Columbine High School. Before the crime, both boys were involved with police and counselors.

Videos of their hatred and explosion-rehearsals were posted online. Klebold wrote vicious stories of violence for school assignments. Harris openly trolled his friends for weapons. Psychopaths are distinguished by two characteristics. The first is a ruthless disregard for others: The second is an astonishing gift for disguising the first. You never see him coming. They come off like Hugh Grant, in his most charming role. She fashions a page-turning morality tale for teenagers, where evil is mostly punished and most good deeds are eventually rewarded.

Books can help craft morality, but first they must hold interest, which Cohen does, as illustrated in this passage, where Sara calms her cleaning-obsessed father: He stands back and watches the sink go from shiny and silver with wetness back to mottled and dusty-looking silver. The sound of microbes screaming, dying, is nearly audible, and right away, I see his jaw slacken and relax. Thank you investigative writer Dave Cullen and novelist Tish Cohen for reminding us of the importance of our vigilance. Imagine you are a teenage girl and your mom runs out on your family.

Then your dad transplants you into a new town where you have no friends and are forced to attend the most intimidating prep school on the planet. Oh and by the way, you also have to deal with your dad's Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, which is rapidly spiraling out of control and made worse by his chosen profession! If you were Imagine you are a teenage girl and your mom runs out on your family. If you were in her shoes, would you be tempted to hide the truth too? Tish Cohen has created a character both endearing and relatable in Sara Black.

When I was reading Little Black Lies, I could definitely put myself in her shoes and sympathize with her character. If I was her, I never would've thought one seemingly innocent lie would spiral so far out of control either! The book really started moving full steam ahead for me though when Sara discovered her dad had been circling their vintage VW bus, checking and rechecking the locks for countless hours throughout the night.

Nor did it ever occur to me what it does to people like Sara who must live with the OCD sufferer and try to help them. I also appreciated how we were shown the intermittent flashbacks to earlier events. I found these extremely amusing as well. Little Black Lies was an extremely well written novel with a lot of heart.

There was no magical twist that saved the day and tied up everything with a big red bow. I would love to see the lives of secondary characters like Carling explored in a second novel too. As the most vicious girl in school there's always one, isn't there? I would've been interested to learn more about her dysfunctional family life and how she acted when her minions weren't around. Aug 20, Faye rated it really liked it. As the new eleventh grader at Anton High — the most elite public school in the country — she sticks out like an old VW bus in a parking lot full of shiny BMWs.

Little Black Lies is an awesome book! It had all the good qualities in a book i was looking for, it was well written, witty, and the characters were believable. I loved the message in the book, as the story goes on Sara learns some important lessons about the value of a good parent i mean her dad is awesome , the love of a friend, and the importance of honesty.

Because a little black lie can lead to just a BIG web of lies.

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Sara was my favorite character, being the main character she took on those challenges in life like her dad's OCD, her parents divorce her mom being so far away in no friends, and a new school. I think a lot of teens can relate to her. The only problem i had with her was the lies, but i wasn't surprised that she was just making an invented life to impress her peers well the High School Mean Girl and her clique.

At one point in the book I was so mad at Sara because of what she said about her father. At times i really did think she didn't deserve a father like Charlie. But that's what made her believable because she had her flaws, it made her human. I liked Poppy too! I wish she had a bigger role in the book. I guess we can call her the weird girl who video camera's everything but she knows who she is and what she wants.

All The characters were awesome LEO!! As much as i like Sara i didn't like her lying. But I'm not angel either. In the end it proved how much trouble you can cause and how much you can hurt people. The ending was perfecto! I'm happy with the ending. So if you haven't read this book you should! Aug 13, Rachael rated it really liked it. Sara Black is so not thrilled about moving. Now she has to leave behind her best friend and shot at valedictorian in Lundon, Massachusetts when her father takes a job as a janitor at the elite Anton High in Boston. Anton is no ordinary school.

How much will Sara lie before the truth can no longer be salvaged? Despite her many lies, Sara is very likable and easy to sympathize with. The reader grows to really care about her and the consequences of all her lies. My only other issue with this novel is that Cohen seemed to be trying too hard to include symbols and metaphors in her writing, and this also distracted me from the story.

Overall, Little Black Lies is a moderately well written and ultimately hopeful story that will entertain readers. Apr 15, Carmen Yeung rated it really liked it Recommends it for: I got hooked into this book by the title, because lies is a really general theme, i got so caught up with what is going to happen that i didn't only read this book in school, i read it anywhere until i finished it. This book is the similar to the other book i was reading at the same time called Shattering Glass, because they are both talking about popularity and what they will do just to achieve that spot.

Sara the protagonist is a really sweet girl, well before she moved to attend the school named Anton Highschool. Anton was a smart school and only rich and smart girls can enter, except for Sara, because she is a math genius but poor. Sara who was mistaken from living from Lundon into London, people admire her and her 'origin'.

She kept those lies to herself, because she figured she can finally become someone new, someone where everyone looked up upon, not because of her brain, because of her popularity. Soon she challenged Carling, schools most richest and smart girl. They soon became friends. Sara's dad Charlie is still in the picture, because he worked in her school as a janitor.

Their relationship is more like mother and son, because Charlie's OCD made him always angry and always do the same thing over and over again. She still loved her dad. After talking to her dad, she had decided to move back to her old home town, lundon. Her mom was there and her old best friend mandy was there too. She will keep those lies to herself and hope everything was just how it use to be. As the eve of the death of her children approaches, a young child goes missing.

As the days pass, most assume the child has died or has been killed. This is not the first young child to have gone missing on the remote Falkland Islands. Catrin is thrust into the midst of the investigation of the missing child and she is forced to deal with the death of her own children while others grieve the loss of theirs.

Catrin is also forced to face her repressed feelings as she has to confront the people that she has shut out of her life. My Take I want to make this clear. I gave this book 5 stars because I enjoyed it. I found it entertaining and difficult to put down. This was largely due to the wonderful characterization. Catrin, Rachel and Callum where created with great care and detail.

I found each of them to be interesting, layered and believable. A quick review of my reviews with show that I am a sucker for a novel with great characters. My love of great characters allows me to overlook issues with the a plot. Honestly, this book had issues with the plot. Plot issues have been an ongoing issue with Bolton novels and this one is no exception.

There are situations that are downright preposterous i. They are all allowed to be together and work out that they are not guilty. This was just not believable hide spoiler ]. Some elements were contrived, i. On the way back she and Callum just happen upon the missing boy. Just before this, Callum has a Eureka moment and figures out where one of the previous missing boys is laid to rest. Callum and Catrin find this body too hide spoiler ]. Given these issues, those readers that are not as enamoured with great characters may find this novel less than 5 stars.

While I certainly could have given it less, I enjoyed the ride. Great characters and sketchy plot aside, the novel featured one of the most entertaining and atmospheric settings I have read. The Falkland Island serve as the backdrop for the story. The setting is remote, lonely and isolated and serves as the depressive force and serves as an ominous and looming presence throughout. The nature of the setting contributed to the nature of the characters. Final Thoughts On some levels, this book is not a 5 star read.

I would give the plot 3 stars, the characters 5 stars and the setting 5 stars. The flaws in the plot did not interfere with my enjoyment of the story. If you have contemplated reading a Sharon Bolton novel, you can't go wrong starting with this one. It is truly one of her best and an excellent example of her writing style. If you enjoy this you will certainly enjoy her other offerings. I think that fans of The Girl on the Train will find lots to love here.

While the plot is not as tight, the characterization and multiple perspectives will feel familiar and comfortable. Excellent characterization rules the day in both novels in these stories peppered with broken and hurting people. View all 17 comments. It was multilayered and unpredictable.

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I did not figure things out ahead of time. It had the perfect atmospheric and surprisingly educational setting. I most certainly did not foresee that wickedly twisted closing and admit that I read it three times. Will I read more of this new to me author's work?

View all 12 comments. A terrifying psychological masterpiece! Haunting and profoundly disturbing! Catrin 'I've been wondering if I have what it takes to kill. Whether I can look at a living creature in the eye and take the one irreversible action that ends a life. Asked and answered, I suppose. I have no difficulty in killing. I'm actually rather good at it. Callum "Imagine a drugged-up, drunken nightmare. The scariest images you can think of racing into your head one right after another.

To wash away the albatrosse's blood. Bolton 's writing is strikingly vivid and expressive, perfectly capturing the essence of natural landscapes, expertly entwining her story in and around them. Little Black Lies takes place in the Falkland Islands, an archipelago of isolated islands on the South Atlantic Ocean, rich with an abundance of wildlife. The rugged landscape of rock formations, steep cliffs, bogs, and coastline make for a beautiful but hostile, unearthly, mysterious, and frightening place.

Bolton takes full advantage of the unsettling and unnerving elements of the Falkland Islands—in spades! This is my favorite Sharon J. The storyline is unique, captivating, and beautifully crafted with deeply passionate characters that I was immediately drawn to. I quickly became immersed in the story, nerves singing, a continual sensation of icy fingers along my spine. A frightening, ominous presence breathing whispers on my skin. Paralyzing terror crashes over me like waves crashing against the cliffs, over and over and over You have been warned View all 22 comments.

Jan 02, Brenda - Traveling Sister rated it it was amazing Shelves: Little Black Lies is a character driven story of a friendship destroyed by a tragic loss caused by one character's negligence resulting in overwhelming grief, guilt, anger, and revenge. The story is written in three parts, told by three suffering and lost characters explaining their course of events which occurred over six days. I love how this gave me understanding from each of their own perspectives of their pain and suffering, past and present. The bit of history of the war, the good descript Little Black Lies is a character driven story of a friendship destroyed by a tragic loss caused by one character's negligence resulting in overwhelming grief, guilt, anger, and revenge.

The bit of history of the war, the good description of the island, and the reality of nature of the whales all added to the story. I thought this to be a clever, unpredictable and interesting story with a brilliant ending. I finished this book a few hours ago and I am still thinking about it. I have a feeling it will stay with me for a long time. The story is set on the Falkland Islands in and revolves around three characters: Catrin, Rachel and Callum, who are each struggling with grief and loss for different reasons. Since the ac I finished this book a few hours ago and I am still thinking about it.

Since the accident, children have gone missing on the island and early on in the story another child being reported missing. No one wants to believe there is someone on the island responsible, though suspicions begin to rise. I am normally very impatient when it comes to descriptive writing, but it worked for me in this story and added to the mystery. Sharon really captures the grief and loss experienced by Catrin, Callum and Rachel.

I sympathised with each of them, but I think I felt for Rachel the most. I found this book difficult to put down; it was brilliantly written and held my attention right to the very last page. Thank you to the publisher via net galley for my copy to read and review. May 22, Elaine rated it it was amazing. So far this book is my Read of the Year and it is going to take a very special book indeed to overtake it.

Set over five days in on the Falkland Islands and a child has gone missing. The author really has created a believeable community. They are tight knit and close, after all they suffered a war together, and the community spirit of the islanders really shines through in the read. It is told from three different viewpoints. Catrin, lost her two children in a tragic accident three years ago and has never recovered. Callum is an ex para who served in the Falklands conflict and, suffering from PTSD returned to the island as the only place that he can hope to find peace of mind in.

The story is divided into three separate distinct parts; Catrin, Callum and Rachel rather than a lot of going to-ing and fro-ing between the characters and this method of storytelling really works well. We spend a lot of uninterrupted time with each character and really delve into their psyche and feel that we get to know them. With each narrator the story subtly twists and shifts and just when you think you know all there is to know, everything changes, leaving you flabbergasted with each aspect of the story that unfolds. I loved the setting and think the author really portrayed the beauty and harshness of the landscape magnificently.

It was so easy to visualise everything from the barren moors to the tin roofed cottages. It is a very haunting and atmospheric read, one that draws you in from page one.


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  • On the one hand I wanted to race through it to see what happened but on the other hand I wanted to savour every page. In short, I absolutely loved this book. Many thanks to the publisher for the review copy. View all 21 comments. Mar 16, Carol rated it it was amazing Shelves: They are here to inhale the stench of our trouble.

    Set in the Falklands, Little Black Lies interweaves a true-life conflict that haunts its islanders, and a poetic nod to The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, with the disappearance of several children. Little Black Lies is taut, a tense, gut-wrenching quest for revenge or redemption. After all it is her book, not mine. View all 13 comments.

    Set in the Falkland Islands, a place that the author brings utterly, vividly to life, we find a small community where tragedy struck, ripping apart close friends and leaving a dark sense of loss running throughout the lives of the inhabitants. When a child goes missing it starts off a chain of events which will bring old suspicions to the surface and threaten to widen the rift. This is one of those novels that is exceptional both in the beauty of the prose and in the sheer addictive quality of the story unfolding before you.

    It packs a real emotional punch with authentic, sympathetic characters whose complicated and tangled interactions are exquisitely drawn by the author, insightful writing that makes you hit a range of feelings as you read it, from angry to sad and everything in between — all the while managing the mystery element of the tale with aplomb, the reveal moments when they come are perfectly placed.

    There is no way to put a label on Little Black Lies — it is a tale of friendship and family, a mystery but with a real eye towards the realities of life, I loved every last minute of it, seriously there is not a wrong step here. If not the best. View all 9 comments. May 27, Dem rated it it was ok. I loved the setting of the Novel in the remote location of the Falklands Islands and really enjoyed the descriptions of the landscape, wildlife and the inhabitants and the references to the Falklands war. The first half of the novel was without doubt entertaining and I found it suspenseful and I was eager to find out what happened to the missing boys.

    However the last part of the novel I found really very contrived and flawed. So many unrealistic coincidences occurred in the last part of this book that my rating went from 4 stars to 2 stars. This dark and complex story dealing with grief, guilt, and revenge will leave you questioning the credibility of its three main characters, each of whom are sympathetic.

    A few times I thought I had the story figured out but each time I was wrong. Although this was not a page turner for me, I enjoyed it for its slower pace, vivid atmosphere, and cleverly written plot. This had to be one of the most haunting endings I have ever read, yet after reading the ending three times I am st Who to believe? This had to be one of the most haunting endings I have ever read, yet after reading the ending three times I am still guessing! While there was a major cliffhanger at the very end I liked how it had me thinking back to the story and searching for the clues that I missed.

    Aug 14, Lee rated it really liked it. This is a very captivating novel, I had not read any of Sharon's work before. It is fast paced, I had no idea who the killer was and this kept me up turning the pages as I had to know what was going on. There is so much emotion in this story, love, friendship, trust, grief, despair and tragedy. Then the final twist that I did not see coming at all. A very satisfying read. Nov 05, Janet rated it it was amazing. I've read all of the Lacey Flint novels but this is the first standalone novel for me.

    Little Black Lies is an emotionally charged story of unremitting grief, loss, pain and love. It's told in the form of three lead narratives over a period of a few days around Guy Fawkes night in November. Catrin is the grieving mother whose children were tragically killed in a freak accident. Callum is ex military personnel with his own problems, namely Post Traumatic Stress Disorder that causes blackouts when falling into a flasback of the time he served. Rachel, once Catrin's best friend since childhood is the cause of the tragedy involving the young boys as a result of negligence when looking after them.

    A fourth character, and an important one at that, is the setting. The Falkland Islands comes to life easily with descriptive prose ranging from it's beautiful scenery to fog filled, windswept days that can chill to the bone. You could almost feel the gorse underfoot, hear the crashing of waves against rocks and feel the remoteness as if you were there yourself. Each narrative gives us a deep insight into their individual characters and this is ultimately the book's strength.

    This is definitely more character driven than thriller. The book isn't perfect by any means. The last part is questionable at best, compelling for sure, but Ms Bolton's ability even when stretching realms of plausiblity, is forgivable as it's still a cut above average. I was moved by parts of it, especially the beach whaling scene. Something I hadn't really heard of. I went off and googled and was met with distressing images of whales beach bound. Shocking to see, not sure I could cope with that in real life.

    I found though whilst reading instead of being drawn into the characters I felt that I was sitting on a precipice quietly observing events unfolding before me And then it hit. There was a delayed reaction as my brain processed what I just read. I went back, reread and was left shaken. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that I read this through the night, falling asleep and being woken by the howling wind and rain lashing against the window.

    Earlier in the evening fireworks had been going off everywhere. Tis Bonfire season - fitting really given what I had just read. It's a hard one to rate. The character driven insight into overwhelming grief is done beautifully and fully deserves 5 stars. The implausibility should lower the score, but I find that I can't because when all is said and done it's a stunning book Little Black Lies is a showing of how deeply entrenched grief can bring someone to the brink of madness View all 8 comments.

    Set on the Falkland Islands in , this is an excellent stand alone novel from Sharon Bolton. Bolton writes with confidence and assurance and this is obviously a novel from an author at the height of her powers. Although ex-soldier Callum is in love with her, she cannot get past her sorrow and make a new life — instead, her existence consists of plotting vengeance on Rachel and, as the novel opens, she is making plans to kill her.

    Catrin is unable to care about anything anymore — even the danger a missing three year old could be in — but she is adept at presenting an image of normality to the world and joins the search. Callum insists that there is a predator on the islands, but most locals consider the possibility that one of them is a monster unthinkable. However, as events unfold, Catrin begins to be viewed with suspicion, just as she does not want her actions to be under scrutiny.