Wednesday 4 December 2019

The Lies We Hide by SE Lynes @SELynesAuthor BLOG TOUR @bookoutre #BooksOnTour #TheLiesWeHide

The truth can set you free, or make you a prisoner…
Thirty years ago, Nicola Watson lived with her parents and older brother in a respectable suburb. At ten years old, she didn’t yet understand why her stomach tightened when she heard her father’s heavy tread as he returned home late at night, or why it made her brother Graham’s stammer get worse, or why one night her mother Carol woke them both, wide-eyed and whispering, and took them out of their home and into the unknown.
Now a successful lawyer in the city, with a life poles apart from her dark beginnings, Nicola has returned home for her mother’s funeral. But as she stands in her mother’s house, remembering the woman who sacrificed everything for her children, Nicola has to confront the guilt that she feels for leaving her family behind. And the belief that she played a part in the events that led to her brother going to prison for murder.
All Carol wanted was to protect her children, but escaping her husband was only the beginning of the story. And when Nicola learns the truth of what her mother did, it will change everything she thought she knew about herself and her family.

The Lies We Hide by SE Lynes is published by Bookoutre. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review and who invited me to take part on this Blog Tour.

To be honest, I didn't take any persuading at all when I was offered a copy of this book. I've read and enjoyed the author's previous psychological thrillers and was eager to see what she was offering next.

As a thriller writer, Lynes excels at her craft. Her novels are not only tense, gripping and yes, thrilling; she also writes with a depth and intelligence that makes her stand out from the crowd. So, yes, I've been a fan for a while.

This book though!  This. Book.

The Lies We Hide is a novel that takes this author way up high on my list of favourites. I have been absolutely transfixed by this incredibly crafted story, filled with character who almost jump from the pages; they are so lifelike. 

I guess, if one wanted to put this novel into a category, then it's probably Domestic Noir. It's a dark dark story that touches upon the darkest of issues and transports the reader to some grimy and terrifying places.

Beginning in the late 1960s, in Blackpool, the reader is introduced to Ted Watson and his bride-to-be Carol. Carefree and happy, young and in love, and with a baby on the way, they are just starting out in life.

The novel is narrated throughout in three voices; we hear from Carol, beginning in the 1980s, as her marriage and life in general becomes more and more difficult. Carol battles to hide her bruises from her two children Graham and Nicola, and her neighbours, until one night Ted goes too far and Carol and the children flee.
We also hear Nicola's modern-day story as she's trying to come to terms with the death of Carol, and reflecting on her life and how it's down to Carol that she is now a successful barrister.
The final voice is that of Richard; a prison chaplain in the 1990s who is establishing a relationship with Nicola's brother Graham; currently serving a sentence for murder and preparing for his release.

The structure of this story is so cleverly done. The readers knows just enough to pique the interest, but nothing is given away by this skilled author, we are kept on tenterhooks throughout, second-guessing what has happened and why the characters are where they are. I can assure you though; you will not guess correctly; there are some pretty amazing curve balls thrown at the reader, especially towards the end. 

This is a smart, sophisticated and meticulously plotted story that is emotionally draining at times. With themes of domestic violence, poverty and drug abuse there's not a lot of pleasant scenes in here. However, it's also a story of hope, determination and love. The author's depiction of a mother's love and loyalty is striking and watching the relationship between Richard and Graham unfold was an absolute joy.

A truly compelling, intelligent, enthralling and satisfying read. I loved it and would recommend it highly.

Amazon best selling author of 'intelligent and haunting' psychological thrillers VALENTINA, MOTHER, THE PACT, THE PROPOSAL and THE WOMEN. 

S E Lynes is a writer, tutor and mentor. Formerly a BBC producer, she has lived in France, Spain, Scotland, Italy, and now lives in Greater London with her husband, three kids and her dog, Lola. 

Her critically acclaimed debut, VALENTINA, was published by Blackbird Digital Books in July 2016. Her second novel, MOTHER was published by Bookouture in 2017, followed in 2018 by THE PACT and THE PROPOSAL. In August 2018, VALENTINA was published in a new edition by Bookouture and THE WOMEN was released in 2019. Her new novel, the dark and gripping family drama, THE LIES WE HIDE, is published Dec 4th 2019.

Susie Lynes has also published two children's books in Italy: Il Leopardo Lampo and La Coccodrilla Ingamba, both available at

Find her on:
Facebook S E Lynes Author
Twitter @SELynesAuthor

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