PERIL IN PINK

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LISTEN FOR THE LIE

by Amy Tintera RELEASE DATE: March 5, 2024

Smart, edgy, and entertaining as heck.

Against her better judgment, Lucy Chase returns to her hometown of Plumpton, Texas, for her grandmother’s birthday, knowing full well that almost everyone in town still believes she murdered her best friend five years ago, when they were in their early 20s.

Coincidentally—or is it?—Ben Owens, a true-crime podcaster, is also in town, interviewing Lucy’s family and former friends about the murder of Savannah Harper, “just the sweetest girl you ever met,” who died from several violent blows to the head. Lucy was found hours later covered in blood, with no memory of what happened. She was—and is—a woman with secrets, which has not endeared her to the people of Plumpton; their narrative is that she was always violent, secretive, difficult. But Ben wants to tell Lucy’s story; attractive and relentless, he uncovers new evidence and coaxes new interviews, and people slowly begin to question whether Lucy is truly guilty. Lucy, meanwhile, lets down her guard, and as she and Ben draw closer together, she has to finally face the truth of her past and unmask the murderer of her complicated, gorgeous, protective friend. Most of the novel is told from Lucy’s point of view, which allows for a natural unspooling of the layers of her life and her story. She’s strong, she’s prickly, and we gradually begin to understand just how wronged she has been. The story is a striking commentary on the insular and harmful nature of small-town prejudice and how women who don’t fit a certain mold are often considered outliers, if not straight-up villains. Tintera is smart to capitalize on how the true-crime podcast boom informs and infuses the current fictional thriller scene; she’s also effective at writing action that transcends the podcast structure.

Smart, edgy, and entertaining as heck.

Pub Date: March 5, 2024

ISBN: 9781250880314

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Celadon Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 16, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2024

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