The Liar’s Girl First Love Gone Horribly Wrong

Because you might manage to save a life this time, instead of being responsible for the taking of five because you were too stupid, too naïve, too in love to see that the boy in your bed was a murderous psychopath.

When St. John’s freshman Allison meets Will it’s love at first sight. He’s charming, sweet, bright, and a perfect gentleman. The only fly in the ointment is that Will doesn’t get along so well with her best friend Liz. Then Liz is murdered, and Will is charged for it – along with four other killings as well; all drowned in Dublin’s Grand Canal. Will gets shipped off to a mental asylum and Allison flees the country, vowing never to return. But ten years later another young woman’s body is found in the Canal and Will tells Garda he has information to give them. But he’ll only speak to one person – Allison. And what he tells her has the power to destroy her whole world once more.

The story alternates between present and past told primarily through Allison’s own voice. But the story is bookended with Will’s own experiences and most disturbingly we’re offered perspective into the mind of a serial killer. The Liar’s Girlis Irish author Catherine Ryan Howard’s second novel. Her best-selling debut Distress Signals was short listed for Irish Crime Novel of the Year and the Crime Writers Association John Creasey New Blood Dagger award. It’s safe to say she wasn’t a one hit wonder. The characters are three dimensional and compelling, the pacing is absolutely perfect, and there are more than enough false clues and misdirection to keep even the savviest reader guessing. In her protagonist Allison, Howard paints a perfect portrait of a happy girl at nineteen absorbed in her first love and taste of independence and then ten years later the haunted shell she has become. As Allison’s own mother notes, her daughter has spent the last decade in a form of stagnation unable to address or move forward from her past. Howard has the rare ability to find humanity and empathy in even the darkest corners and makes truly wonderful use of the campus setting in Dublin for much of the tale. But warning – once you start reading this one and get caught up in its twists and turns you may not be able to put it down until the very end!

The Liar’s Girl
Catherine Ryan Howard

Top photo: Bigstock

About Winnefred Ann Frolik (155 Articles)
Winnefred Ann Frolik (Winnie for short) was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She completed the International Baccleareate program at Schenley High School and then attended the University of Pittsburgh where she completed a double major in English Literature and Creative Writing. After graduation she spent a number of years working in the non-profit sector and it was during that phase in her life she moved to D.C.  Winnie co-wrote a book on women in the U.S. Senate with Billy Herzig.  She enrolled in a baking program in culinary school and worked in food services for a while. She currently works in personal services while writing for Woman Around Town and doing other freelance writing projects including feeble personal attempts at fiction. Her brother is a reporter in Dayton, Ohio so clearly there are strong writing genes in the family.  She lives in Pittsburgh, PA, with two demanding cats.