Spinning a page-turning story of literary suspense that begins in the present and unwinds over almost a century, this unforgettable debut channels the haunting allure of Atonement as its masterfully woven web of lies, secrets, and betrayals unravels to a shocking conclusion
Veteran con artist Roy spots an obvious easy mark when he meets Betty, a wealthy widow, online. In no time at all, he’s moved into Betty’s lovely cottage and is preparing to accompany her on a romantic trip to Europe. Betty’s grandson disapproves of their blossoming relationship, but Roy is sure this scheme will be a success. He knows what he’s doing. As this remarkable feat of storytelling weaves together Roy’s and Betty’s futures, it also unwinds their pasts. Dancing across almost a century, decades that encompass unthinkable cruelty, extraordinary resilience, and remarkable kindness, The Good Liar is an epic narrative of sin, salvation, and survival—and for Roy and Betty, there is a reckoning to be made when the endgame of Roy’s crooked plot plays out.
At the start of British author Searle's engrossing debut, octogenarian Roy Courtnay is looking forward to his lunch with Betty McLeish, a wealthy widow he's met online. The apprehensive Betty has her grandson, Stephen, drive her to the appointed restaurant in an unspecified locale she and Roy have agreed on, where he waits outside in the car, prepared to rescue her if need be. Roy and Betty hit it off, and he soon moves into her cottage in the English countryside, where he sets about to bilk her of her fortune. Stephen has his doubts about Roy. Betty lingers in the background, mild-mannered and shrouded in mystery, until she finally takes center stage and her intentions become clear. Equal parts crime novel and character study, the tale is itself an elegantly structured long con. The pace is almost maddeningly deliberate, with details about the characters and their schemes doled out like a controlled substance, but patient readers will be rewarded with devastating third-act twists and a satisfying denouement.