08 March 2018

Little Liar

Women's Fiction
Psychological Thriller

By Clare Boyd

Paperback 410 pages
Publisher Bookouture (29th Jan 2018)
ISBN-13 978-1786813978

‘I raced through this novel in one weekend! Fast paced and twisty, the shocks kept coming!’ NetGalley Reviewer

📕My Review

Gemma Bradley is a married 'career woman' struggling to find the perfect work-life balance. She seemingly has it all - a loving husband, two children and a fancy upmarket house. Now pregnant with her third child and having been offered a promotion at work, her world begins to spectacularly unravel when 10-year-old daughter Rosie's tantrums get out of hand. Nosey next door neighbour Mira phones the police, convinced that Rosie's screams are the result of child abuse.

Little Liar was in many respects a difficult book to read due its subject matter. A misconception escalates until it's completely out of control to the point where Gemma begins to question her love for her daughter. Rosie is pulling the strings but does she fully understand the consequences?

I thought nosey neighbour Mira and her dull husband Barry were by far the most interesting characters. Mira opens up about her troubled, unhappy childhood and suddenly the reader is able to understand her connection with Rosie. Meanwhile, Gemma is powerless to stop Mira's interference and is now under scrutiny from social workers and the police.

Clare Boyd's writing is excellent. The story takes on a life of its own as the reader experiences feelings of sorrow, heartbreak, anger, relief and astonishment. The ending took an unexpected turn and was handled with a touch of humour, which I really liked. Ooooh how I'd love to say more about that ending but my lips are sealed!

The only criticism I have (and it's a small criticism) is that the book comes across as slightly repetitive. I personally think it could benefit from being a tiny bit shorter in length and the pacing quickening up. That being said, it was a very good read and handled with the sensitivity it deserved.

I received an Advance Reader Copy. My thanks to NetGalley, Clare Boyd and Bookouture.

Barnsey's Books Rating 

📗The Blurb

The perfect family... or the perfect lie?

To the outside world, Gemma Bradley has it all – a doting husband, high-flying career and two delightful kids – but inside the four walls of her tastefully renovated home, she is a mother at her wits’ end who has given too many last warnings and counted to ten too many times.

When a child’s scream pierces the night, Gemma’s neighbour does what anyone would do: she calls the police. She wants to make sure that Rosie, the little girl next door, is safe.

Gemma knows she hasn’t done anything wrong, but the more she fights to defend the family she loves, the more her flawless life begins to crumble around her. Is the carefully guarded secret she’s been keeping suddenly in danger of breaking free?

When Rosie disappears, Gemma thinks she only has herself to blame. That is, until she discovers that Rosie has been keeping dark secrets of her own in a pink plastic diary.

Distraught and terrified, Gemma doesn’t know where to turn. The only thing she knows is that her daughter’s life is in danger…

📘The Author

Clare lives with her husband and their two daughters in Surrey, where her little green shed at the bottom of the garden provides a haven for her writing life. Before becoming a writer, she enjoyed a career in television, as a researcher in documentaries and then as a script editor in drama at the BBC and Channel Four, where her love of storytelling took hold.

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