One Perfect Lie by Lisa Scottoline. New York: St. Martin's Press, 2017. 355 pp. *****+
Chris Brennan is applying for a job as a Central Valley high school government teacher and as an assistant baseball coach. He's the first to admit that his impeccable resume, references, and background is false. He has studied the curriculum, googled the staff members, researched the principal and the town. Central Valley is a small town in south-central Pennsylvania. One surprise, once he is hired, is that a staff member from Wyoming and wants to bond over fond memories of where they both grew up. Chris is on a mission and is looking for a particular high school student, a fatherless boy, a loner, and one who is easily manipulated. Befriending the boys on the baseball team is easier than he expected; getting to know their families reveals secrets of betrayal, fraud, sexting, and manipulation. The apparent suicide by one of the teachers raises questions as to what is really going on in the high school and town. Who is the aggressor and who is the victim?
Scottoline takes us on a wild ride in this psychological thriller. No one is who they seem to be and yet all of the characters are likable and relatable. I loved that she kept me guessing and I wanted to get to the answers but didn't want the book to end. The fact that she is a local author and some of the action takes place in the Philadelphia suburbs and many of her landmarks are identifiable adds to the reality of the story. However, it could take place at any suburban high school because Scottoline accurately portrays a high school environment. Scottoline is a master at creating scenes and this novel could easily be made into an action packed film. I loved this book from the beginning until the end.
I received a copy for review. Full disclosure...I am a huge Scottoline fan! It will be published on April 11th, add it to your "Must Read Book" list.
Lisa Scottoline is a New York Times bestselling and Edgar Award-winning author of twenty-eight novels. She has 30 million copies of her books in print in the United States, she has been published in thirty-five countries, and her thrillers have been optioned for television and film. Lisa also writes a weekly column with her daughter, Francesca Serritella, for The Philadelphia Inquirer, and those stories have been adapted into a series of bestselling memoirs, the first of which is entitled Why My Third Husband Will Be A Dog. Lisa lives on a Pennsylvania farm with an array of disobedient pets. Visit Lisa at www.Scottoline.com, or follow her on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram @LisaScottoline.
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