While this book isn’t exactly ancient, it was released last year so technically it is a throwback review.
The Lying Game (Release Date: July 2017)
On a cool June morning, a woman is walking her dog in the idyllic coastal village of Salten along a tidal estuary known as the Reach. Before she can stop him, the dog charges into the water to retrieve what first appears to be a wayward stick, but to her horror, turns out to be something much more sinister…
The next morning, three women in and around London—Fatima, Thea, and Isabel—receive the text they had always hoped would NEVER come, from the fourth in their formerly inseparable clique, Kate, that says only, “I need you.”
The four girls were best friends at Salten, a second-rate boarding school set near the cliffs of the English Channel. Each different in their own way, the four became inseparable and were notorious for playing the Lying Game, telling lies at every turn to both fellow boarders and faculty, with varying states of serious and flippant nature that were disturbing enough to ensure that everyone steered clear of them. The myriad and complicated rules of the game are strict: no lying to each other—ever. Bail on the lie when it becomes clear it is about to be found out. But their little game had consequences, and the girls were all expelled in their final year of school under mysterious circumstances surrounding the death of the school’s eccentric art teacher, Ambrose (who also happens to be Kate’s father).
Add to Goodreads
One of the many things Ruth Ware is particularly skilled at doing, is creating intense atmospheres. Her descriptions of feeling and location are so vivid, you really do feel like you’re part of the story. It’s downright chilling sometimes. I found this especially true with her debut In a Dark Dark Wood which I absolutely loved, and also in The Lying Game.
In this character-driven mystery, the twisty and eerie atmosphere is crucial as it adds to the characters’ increasing fear and paranoia. And boy was it eerie! What once felt like home to these young girls has become wild and dangerous. From the reader’s perspective “The Mill” is lonely, cold, and isolated. Perfect for a toe-curling mystery.
I really enjoyed this one. It was super intense and I couldn’t put it down last night even though the rest of my family had long gone to sleep. It did go on a bit which is why I can’t give it 5 stars, but overall, it had all the elements of an excellent thriller. Lots of suspense, red herrings, and unexpected twist ending.