Maddie Faraday was relatively content with her life – though the gossip mill grew a little tiresome, she liked the small town she’d lived in all her life, loved her beautiful daughter Em, and had managed to move past her husband’s affair five years ago. At least until she found a pair of black, lace, crotchless panties tucked under the front seat of her husband’s car. Even so, she could perhaps have lived with that, but her discovery coincided with the return to town of C.L. Sturgess, the boy who she lost her virginity to back in high school, admittedly in a fit of pique over something Brent had done. As Maddie discovers that C.L. still has a certain something, Brent disappears, and much to the distress of her mother, Maddie becomes the most gossiped about person in town. She also uncovers some long-held secrets, regains her self, and finds love.
I first read Tell Me Lies when it was released in 1998, as part of a glut of Crusie, and though I’ve thought fondly of her novels, until recently I hadn’t returned to them. I enjoyed going back, but in the week or so since my re-reading, and in the wake of half a dozen other novels, I have only a foggy recollection of the finer plot points. I certainly enjoyed the ride, but couldn’t tell you anything significant about any of the characters or plot twists, except for Maddie’s best friend Treva’s big secret. I know this was a better than average romance, with some interesting characterisation and fresh dialogue, and it certainly hasn’t dated in the interim, but that’s about it. - Alex