The Book of Lies: A Novel (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

On the first page, Catherine Rozier admits that she has killed Nic, a "friend" at one time. Brilliant, yet socially awkward, "Cathy" tells her story from Guernsey Island, 1985, while studying her dad's 1965 records of the severe impact of the WWII German Occupation. The quest for truth obsesses both Cathy and her dad each reaching conclusions highly unpopular with others. High-spirited and crazy, Cathy's voice relays enduring extreme bullying, longs for acceptance and wants to confess her crime. One person's truth is another's lie, as this intriguing and quickly paced tale focuses upon a historically forgotten people and a devastated, lonely girl! 

— From Jane


On the English Channel island of Guernsey, a teenage girl’s Mean Girls-like experience pushes her to murder her best friend in a scandal, she will discover, that mirrors her uncle’s previously unknown story from the days of the island’s Nazi occupation during WWII. Told  through  the voices of fifteen-year-old Cat Rozier and her long-dead Uncle Charlie—known to Cat only by the audio recordings he left behind—The Book of Lies lucidly illuminates the interior lives of a scorned modern girl with attitude and a defiant, faded man. With echoes of  Nicole  Krauss’s The History of Love and Jennifer McMahon’s Promise Not to Tell, Mary Horlock’s stunning debut novel is an unforgettable exploration of aspiration, anguish, and  rebellion.

About the Author

MARY HORLOCK was born in Australia but grew up on Guernsey in the Channel Islands, moving to England at the age of eighteen. She studied at Cambridge and went on to work as a curator at Tate Britain and Tate Liverpool. She is a former curator of the Turner Prize. Mary lives in London with her partner and their children and is currently writing a book on art and camouflage in the Second World War. Although she has written widely on contemporary art, this is her first novel.

Praise For…

“The joy of this ingenious debut is that, somehow, it manages to link twin stories convincingly to create an impressive fable about the relativity of truth and the deceits that make living on a small island possible. Highly recommended.”
Financial Times

“Moving, engaging and complex . . . Horlock’s authorial debut is impressive.”
— the Scotsman

“[An] assured debut. . . . Horlock has created an authentic voice and not only illuminated the history of a small island but also thrown light on the subjectivity of history, truth and memory.”
— The Independent

Product Details
ISBN: 9780062065094
ISBN-10: 0062065092
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Date: July 19th, 2011
Pages: 368
Language: English
Series: P.S.