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Believing the Lie: A Lynley Novel [Hardcover]

Elizabeth George
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 10 2012 Inspector Lynley

After writing sixteen Inspector Lynley novels, New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth George has millions of fans waiting for the next one. As USA Today put it, "It's tough to resist George's storytelling, once hooked." With Believing the Lie, she's poised to hook countless more.

Inspector Thomas Lynley is mystified when he's sent undercover to investigate the death of Ian Cresswell at the request of the man's uncle, the wealthy and influential Bernard Fairclough. The death has been ruled an accidental drowning, and nothing on the surface indicates otherwise. But when Lynley enlists the help of his friends Simon and Deborah St. James, the trio's digging soon reveals that the Fairclough clan is awash in secrets, lies, and motives.

Deborah's investigation of the prime suspect-Bernard's prodigal son Nicholas, a recovering drug addict-leads her to Nicholas's wife, a woman with whom she feels a kinship, a woman as fiercely protective as she is beautiful. Lynley and Simon delve for information from the rest of the family, including the victim's bitter ex-wife and the man he left her for, and Bernard himself. As the investigation escalates, the Fairclough family's veneer cracks, with deception and self-delusion threatening to destroy everyone from the Fairclough patriarch to Tim, the troubled son Ian left behind.

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Product Description


A fascinating read. Woman Presses all the buttons to make us hoover her stuff up Daily Telegraph She's a designer of fastidious mosaics that never fail to intrigue. Guardian A confession: I'm addicted to Elizabeth George; her crime novels combine Victorian craftsmanship, psychological observation and ingenious plotting. George's celebrated attention to detail keeps the reader totally immersed. Bliss. Kate Saunders, Saga An intelligent book, clipped and precise, every word chosen with care ... a cool, clever book that needs concentration and a sharp brain to unravel ... Along the way to solving the crime we meet some finely drawn characters who emerge as real people with faults and frailties. Ms George is the connoisseur's crime writer. Like fine wine, her words need to be savoured ... Lynley is a policeman with a gentle touch and it is good to have him back on such brilliant form. Sunday Express The author writes brilliantly and has an incredible ability to set a scene and create characters you want to know more about. Sun --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

About the Author

Elizabeth George is the New York Times bestselling author of sixteen suspense novels, one book of nonfiction, and two short-story collections. Her work has been honored with the Anthony and Agatha awards, as well as several other prestigious prizes. She lives in Washington State.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
"He has set me in dark places
Like the dead of long ago." -- Lamentations 3:6 (NKJV)

Nothing pleases me more than to sit down with a long engrossing tale and to be drawn fully into a different world, gaining many insights from the experience . . . and feeling transformed at the end.

Having been a fan of the Thomas Lynley novels for some time, I settled in with this book and waited for the magic to arrive.

It was a long wait. In the last hundred pages, the book began to take on a more interesting character . . . or I would have rated it at one star.

This book needs a strong editor to whack it down to size to fit the story's potential. Without that, you'll spend a lot of time following matters that won't interest you very much and may even make you feel not as good as when you picked up the book.

Unless you feel compelled to read every word that Elizabeth George writes, I suggest you skip this book. The next one has to be better.

So what's it all about? The book's core concerns the death of Ian Cresswell, who had recently left his wife to live with his male lover. Sir David Hillier "loans" Lynley to a casual acquaintance, Bernard Fairclough, to look into the death in an unofficial way. Thomas asks Simon and Deborah St. James to join him in the sleuthing, and he makes occasional calls on Barbara Havers for research help. It's all a bit awkward because Thomas cannot tell his "guv" and lover, Isabelle Ardley, where he is or what he is doing . . . and Barbara Havers is under her authority.

The book has multiple narrators: the deceased; Lynley; Deborah; Barbara; Cresswell's son Tim; a Fairclough daughter; a Fairclough daughter-in-law; and Zed Benjamin, a tabloid reporter.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Oh my, Elizabeth - what have you done? March 21 2012
This book is a mess. There are tangled plot lines (and believe me in 600 pages things can get very tangled, unsatisfying characters and the need for a good editor. I have read all of George's books and have wavered over the past couple - this has totally turned me off. I simply won't bother when the next one comes out. Worst of all - that WHINEY Deborah St. James is back still moaning about having no kid around. I wanted to scream at her to go to China for a baby and hopefully stay there. She has pretty well destroyed Barbara Havers (who if George had any guts would make her gay) - the obsession with the neighbours is really getting stale.

So George has finally beaten me. One less fan. From reviews I have read on amazon and other sites, I am not alone. I wish I had waited for the paperback. It's very heavy in hardcover - making it difficult to toss out the window.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Elizabeth - this is bad April 27 2012
I was excited so see there was a new Inspector Lynley. I have read all the previous in the series and would recommend all of them. Loved the characters and the story lines. This one "Believing the Lie" is 600 pages of nothing. I kept reading and expecting that it would get better but it never did. It got more and more confused with more and more unlikable characters so that I could hardly wait for it to end. I was so disappointed with this book that I will probably not read another if there is one.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspector Lynley Returns After a Lengthy Hiatus Jan. 23 2012
By Alison S. Coad TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
"Believing the Lie" is the 17th book in Elizabeth George's long-running Inspector Lynley series, and it continues to focus on Tommy Lynley, Earl of Asherton and Detective Inspector at Scotland Yard. One of his superiors asks him to undertake a clandestine investigation into the drowning death of a man living in Cumbria, in England's Lake District, after the man's uncle worries that something underhanded might have occurred in spite of the coroner ruling the death an accident. Tommy doesn't want to take on this task, but he has no choice, and he therefore enlists his friend Simon, a forensic specialist, and Simon's wife Deborah to join him on the trip, while also asking Barbara Havers, his partner at work, to look into some information from London. In the meantime, a young reporter for a scandal sheet has been sent to the same location in order to dig up dirt on the prodigal son and cousin of the dead man, and he is told not to return without a front-page story.... One of the most marvelous things about Elizabeth George's books is that she always takes the time to create and flesh out all of her characters, the individuals involved in the crime being investigated as much as the detective and his cohorts. This makes for lengthy novels (this one is just over 600 pages), but the characters and their complexities are so compelling that it's a joy to commit to the time required to find out all about them. It's possible that one could read any of this series without having read the previous ones, but one would be missing out on the depth and nuances of the main characters' changing relationships to each other and that would be a shame. Very highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not one of her better books Dec 22 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I usually find her books to be filled with suspense and hard to put down, however, this was good but not to her usual standard
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Off the mystery mark April 19 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book lacked direction. While it included the usual characters, it had so many sub-plots and other characters that it detracted from the story. Having read many of Elizabeth George's book, this one was the least enjoyable. Seemed a bit tabloidy.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars never disappointed
This is the usual convoluted mystery characteristic of Elizabeth George where contrasting personalities highlighted with a scattering of humour keep you unable to put the book... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Lorraine Toma-Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars Lynley at his best
I am a big fan of the Inspector Lynley series and this one was a pleasure to read while on a vacation trip to North West England. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Margaret sanders
3.0 out of 5 stars Lynley Novel
I usually like this author and the Inspector Lynley novels but I found this one not up to Ms George's usual standard. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Gloria Fidler
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good read
I enjoy the Lynley series and this didn't disappoint. Looking forward to the next book and the developing story with Barbara
Published 9 months ago by kbruynzeel
2.0 out of 5 stars Should have taken other reviews seriously!
Not good at all. Six hundred and eight pages to basically say nothing. Like other reviewers, I have loved Inspector Lynley mysteries and especially the character of Barbara... Read more
Published 13 months ago by caseygirl
3.0 out of 5 stars Well, it was ok, but
I am an Elizabeth George fan from the start and I was eager to get into this book. On the whole it was ok, but not up to her usual standards. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Louise
1.0 out of 5 stars Too long and uninteresting
The early Lynley novels were a good read, good plots and exciting. However, the later ones, in general, have become long, boring and too full of sexual themes which add nothing to... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Brian Tupper
4.0 out of 5 stars I'm hooked
I'm a newcomer to Inspector Lynley novels, this being the third one that I have read. But I'm hooked. I've already put in an advance order for the next book. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Okanagan Bob
3.0 out of 5 stars Not her best
I seems to me that ever since Ms.George killed off Helen, the books just haven't been the same. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Ivona Bradley
3.0 out of 5 stars Lindley's Romance?
I find one of my favourite detectives having a romantic interlude with someone who I don't like or respect gets in the way of the story. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Michal
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