Melina Marchetta's gripping new novel Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil is a cracking fusion of suspense and heart-rending drama. Chief Inspector Bish Ortley of the London Met, divorced and still grieving the death of his son, has been drowning his anger in Scotch. Something has to give, and he's no sooner suspended from the force than a busload of British students is subject to a deadly bomb attack across the Channel. Bish's daughter is one of those on board. Also on the bus is Violette LeBrac. Raised in Australia, Violette has a troubled background. Thirteen years ago her grandfather bombed a London supermarket, killing dozens of people. Her mother, Noor, is serving a life sentence in connection with the incident. But before Violette's part in the French tragedy can be established she disappears. Bish, who was involved in Noor LeBrac's arrest, is now compelled to question everything that happened back then. And the more he delves into the lives of the family he helped put away, the more he realises that truth wears many colours. With its cast of unforgettable characters, social insight and wry wit, Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil is an irresistible novel about human identity, lost children and the nature of real love. 'The complex, fast-moving plot, Marchetta's vivid evocation of her characters, and her perfect ear for dialogue are seductive . . . An immersive reading experience.' Australian Book Review 'Marchetta . . . seems to have inside knowledge of the mysterious processes of the teenage brain. A busload of quarrelsome, immature adolescents doesn't daunt her in the least . . . all stand out as individuals.' Marilyn Stasio, New York Times 'A novel of great scope, of past and present, and above all, the Marchetta trademark of a fierce and loving heart.' Marcus Zusak 'Emotionally complex characters complement an intricate plot rife with dizzying twists and devastating reveals. This visceral read manages to capture the emotional aftermath of a mass tragedy while sustaining tension and delivering a scathing indictment of racial profiling, vigilante justice, and the 24-hour news cycle.' Publishers Weekly 'This is a cracking read that's also timely and intelligent . . . Everything works together in this book . . . It's a big, juicy story filled with many characters and Marchetta is a master storyteller. On occasion, even cynical reviewers stay up long past bedtime, nodding and turning pages. Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil deserves to be on the bedside table of every crime fan.' The Saturday Paper 'An electrifying contemporary detective thriller.' Fiona Hardy, Books & Publishing 'Marchetta is a wonderful storyteller, with every interaction important, thrilling, enjoyable, or all of the above, and every character gifted with such an honest, gloriously vivid life of their own that reading the whole thing in a searing rush of pages in one sitting is irresistible.' Readings Monthly 'A stunning marriage of global anguish and personal pain . . . often heartbreaking, sometimes heart-stopping, and definitely unforgettable.' Ivy Pochoda, author of Visitation Street 'Heart-pounding (and heartbreaking) . . . Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil grabbed me by the throat and didn't let go until I'd read the last word - and shed the last tear.' Gayle Forman, author of If I Stay and Leave Me 'A good, long, engrossing leisure read is assured.' Weekend Australian 'This fast-paced novel has a great balance of humanity, thriller and hidden pasts.' Manly Daily '[A] slick combination of crime thriller and family drama . . . The vibrant characters leap from the pages as Marchetta builds up the suspense to a superb crescendo.' Women's Weekly
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Melina Marchetta melds the personal and the political in this tightly wound crime thriller. Set in a Europe besieged by terror attacks, Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil features a cast of vivid characters led by Chief Inspector Bashir Ortley, whose daughter goes missing after a bus bombing. Drowning in booze, “Bish” must confront his past and face up to a web of family, friends and lifelong enemies as he searches for his daughter. Marchetta has come a long way since penning the perennial YA favourite Looking for Alibrandi, tackling heavy social issues and family dynamics—and we’re happy to be along for the ride.
At the start of YA author Marchetta's stunning adult debut, Bashir "Bish" Ortley, a cop on suspension from London's Metropolitan Police, travels to Calais, France, to see his teenage daughter after the bombing of her tour bus. Also among the survivors is 17-year-old Violette LeBrac Zidane, whose mother and grandfather allegedly conspired to blow up a British supermarket 13 years earlier. The authorities suspect the bomb on the bus was meant for Violette, but the public believes that she planted it. Either way, the Brits want Violette in their custody and out of France, so they task Bish with bringing her in. Violette runs, forcing Bish to work with the girl's family in order to find her. Emotionally complex characters complement an intricate plot rife with dizzying twists and devastating reveals. This visceral read manages to capture the emotional aftermath of a mass tragedy while sustaining tension and delivering a scathing indictment of racial profiling, vigilante justice, and the 24-hour news cycle.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I loved this book, it's a beautifully written complex story that made me laugh & cry. The characters are so real and their stories so relevant (sadly). I really want to know what happens next. Thank you.
Loved this book !! Made me laugh and cry, the characters are alive in my head and heart 💜
I am so grateful for talents such as Melina! This book is gripping, current, confronting and honest! I loved every line.