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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Simply Lies


Narrators: Lisa Flanagan, Corey Carthew ISBN: 978-1538750636

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

Publication Date: 04/18/2023

Format: Other

My Rating: 4 Stars ARC)



From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The 6:20 Man comes a twisting new psychological thriller in which two women—one a former detective, the other a dangerous con artist—go head-to-head in an electrifying game of cat and mouse.


Mickey Gibson, single mother and former detective, leads a hectic life similar to that of many moms: juggling the demands of her two small children with the tasks of her job working remotely for ProEye, a global investigation company that hunts down wealthy tax and credit cheats.


When Mickey gets a call from a colleague named Arlene Robinson, she thinks nothing of Arlene’s unusual request for her to go inventory the vacant home of an arms dealer who cheated ProEye’s clients and fled. That is, until she arrives at the mansion to discover a dead body in a secret room—and that nothing is as it seems.


Not only does the arms dealer not exist but the murder victim turns out to be Harry Langhorne, a man with mob ties who used to be in Witness Protection. What’s more, no one named Arlene Robinson works at ProEye.


In the blink of an eye, Gibson has become a prime suspect in a murder investigation—and now her job is also on the line until she proves that she was set up. Before long, Gibson is locked in a battle of wits with a brilliant woman with no name, a hidden past, and unknown motives—whose end game is as mysterious as it is deadly.


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My Review


David Baldacci returns following The 6:20 Man (5 stars) with his latest standalone suspense, SIMPLY LIES —two women—a former detective and a con artist—are caught up in a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse in this action-packed thriller.


Mickey Gibson, a former detective and single mom of two, had worked her way up to be a criminal investigator, and then Peter came along. He wanted to start a family, and as soon as baby one was born, he was different, and then she was pregnant with number two.


He cleaned the bank accounts, ran off with his secretary, and left her with the bills. She lost the house, had to leave her job with the force, and moved to Williamsburg, VA, where her retired parents lived.


She joined ProEye global PK agency that did most of its sleuthing online. It is a global investigation company specializing in financial fraud, locating hidden assets of criminals and those looking to evade taxes. It allowed her to work from home, but juggling work and single parenting with two little ones was always challenging.


When she receives a call from a woman named Arlene Robinson, that says she works with the company requesting her to conduct an inventory of a vacant home of an arms dealer who cheated ProEye’s clients and fled, she goes.


However, when she arrives, she finds a dead body in a secret room and realizes she may have been set up. She finds a cryptic message left on the wall. The man, Harry, has ties with the mob and was previously in witness protection.


Ironically, Mickey discovers there is no Arlene that works at ProEye. Mickey is now a prime suspect in a murder investigation—and her job is in jeopardy until she has proof she is innocent. She does not need this stress with all she is juggling.


Now the mysterious woman calls herself “Clarisse” and continues calling her, urging her to dive keeper into the background of the murder victim.


Who is Clarisse, and why has she involved Mickey in this dangerous game?


Baldacci expertly keeps the tension high and weaves a twisty suspenseful tale starring two intriguing women leads. Both women are interesting, and I enjoyed the suspense and cat-and-mouse game. There are also parts of cryptocurrency and NFTs that are fascinating.


If this is the beginning of a new series, I look forward to reading more about these two dynamic women.


Even though SIMPLY LIES was not as EPIC as The 6:20 Man, overall, was an entertaining read. You cannot go wrong with Baldacci—a big fan; he always surprises you!


Thanks to #GrandCentralPublishing for a gifted ARC via #NetGalley for review purposes.


@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

Pub Date: April 18, 2023

My Rating: 4 Stars




Praise


"Baldacci is at his best in this standalone thriller. [He] keeps the twists coming fast and furious in this tense page-turner, never losing credibility even as it takes bigger and bigger swings. Readers will fall in love with Mickey and hold their breath for her through to the very end." ―Publishers Weekly, starred review

"Intriguing... Baldacci’s readers will find plenty to enjoy here."

―Booklist


"David Baldacci is a master storyteller."

―Associated Press


"David Baldacci is one of the all-time best thriller authors."

―Lisa Gardner, #1 New York Times bestselling author


"A master storyteller."

―People







About the Author


David Baldacci has been writing since childhood, when his mother gave him a lined notebook in which to write down his stories. (Much later, when David thanked her for being the spark that ignited his writing career, she revealed that she’d given him the notebook to keep him quiet, “because every mom needs a break now and then.”)


David published his first novel, Absolute Power, in 1996. The feature film adaptation followed, with Clint Eastwood as its director and star. In total, David has published 47 novels for adults; all have been national and international bestsellers, and several have been adapted for film and television. His novels are published in over 45 languages and in more than 80 countries, with 150 million copies sold worldwide. David has also published seven novels for young readers.


Lifelong Virginian, David received his Bachelor’s degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law, after which he practiced law in Washington, D.C.


In addition to being a prolific writer, David is a devoted philanthropist, and his greatest efforts are dedicated to his family’s Wish You Well Foundation®. Established by David and his wife, Michelle, the Wish You Well Foundation supports family and adult literacy programs in the United States. In 2008 the Foundation partnered with Feeding America to launch Feeding Body & Mind, a program to address the connection between literacy, poverty and hunger. Through Feeding Body & Mind, more than 1 million new and gently used books have been collected and distributed through food banks to families in need.


David and his family live in Virginia. WEBSITE


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