Monday 1 October 2018

Liar, Liar by Lisa Jackson

Didi Storm is going to jump from that San Francisco building, or is she? And would you know it, her daughter Remmi is walking past the actual scene as she's about to.

Coincidence? Well not if they lived in the same house, or even the same city. But they don't, they're 20 years estranged, since ex-beauty queen/club dancer Didi left Remmi in the care of a babysitter, and drove off into the sunset, following a bizarre incident when Remmi witnessed Didi meeting a man in the Nevada desert, and handing over one of her twins for cash.

Detective Dani Settler also finds things a bit too coincidental, a tell-all book on Didi's life has just been published, and nothing will help sales like a body slammed into concrete. Well, whaddaya know, Didi didn't leap - it was someone dressed like Didi, down to the signature fingernail. 

Has anyone noticed the pattern with the names yet? 

Except it's only the girl's names. Boys, we get Noah, Brett, Oliver and so on. And there are other girls who fare better.

So far, it's an unlikely plot - too many weird coincidences, flat dully-named characters - apart from the investigators and one or two others, we don't find out what many of them do with their lives, and a fair degree of cheesiness when it comes to names and catchy songs that are hummed. But this isn't even the most annoying part. It's the writing. A phrase just repeats, every paragraph or so, and then the scene changes, and a new loop of phrase is born. It's not like I can quote a paragraph, you wouldn't get it -  it's just the phrase repeats, sometimes slightly different, but the words and meaning is identical. And the effect is cumulative, so the repeating phrase lodges somewhere in your brain, and the last time the phrase repeats, you want to throw something (the book perhaps). And definitely this review. Because maybe there are some people who need reminders from authors, and perhaps repetition can serve a purpose in writing, but too much of a repeating phrase is not a good thing. See.

So, if you're into earworms, throwing books and kindles around and cheese, then read this book. Else, give it a skip. It's not worth your time. 

Why did I finish it? I couldn't say for sure. I blame my mother, who chased me around the house with cauliflower once, because I didn't clean my plate.

Almost as bad as The President is Missing.

ISBN: 9781617734670

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