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A Lovely Lie


A Lovely Lie

If you have ever known a particularly manipulative person who lies so often to get their way that it’s almost impossible to discern the truth from the falsehoods, then A LOVELY LIE will ring especially true for you. Jaime Lynn Hendricks so deftly handles the twisty plot and layers of lies from both the past and the present that your head literally will be spinning.

On the night of their senior picnic in 1999, Scarlett and her best friend, Pepper, are involved in a car accident that leaves two of their classmates dead. After lying to the authorities to protect each other, Pepper leaves town and Scarlett never hears from her again. Pepper had shared with Scarlett that she was pregnant but was planning to relocate to New York to have an abortion and then pursue an acting career.

"A LOVELY LIE tackles the psychological thriller and mystery genres with a vengeance, as well as the very nature of lies and those who use them as weapons."

Following the police investigation, in which she was sworn to secrecy by Pepper about some of the false information they provided, Scarlett doesn’t know what to believe and quietly goes on with her life. This will include getting impregnated by Pepper’s high school boyfriend, Vince, and marrying him to raise their son, Luke.

Scarlett now works at the Gulf Sands Beach Resort in Florida and is about to have her entire life turned upside down by the appearance of a new guest. Zoey Wilson, a young women from New York, claims to be Pepper’s daughter. Scarlett now realizes that Pepper never had that abortion and is shocked to learn that her former BFF was killed by a drunk driver.

Zoey had gone through her mother’s belongings and found a sealed and unmailed letter made out to Scarlett in which she makes reference to their secrets and the accident that occurred all those years ago. More importantly, Zoey wants to know the identity of her father, who she believes is Vince. Scarlett is now forced to reexamine the events of that fateful night and attempt to discern the lies from the truth.

Throughout A LOVELY LIE, we are treated to interview transcripts from the 1999 investigation and are allowed to see the different stories and alibis from all involved. Zoey is an aspiring investigative journalist who does not plan to leave Florida without answers, which will open many old wounds. Readers may not be prepared for the biggest lie of all, which occurs in the present day and will completely change the arc of the story. Hendricks does an expert job revealing bits and pieces along the way, creating a finale that will have an impact on every character.

A LOVELY LIE tackles the psychological thriller and mystery genres with a vengeance, as well as the very nature of lies and those who use them as weapons.

Reviewed by Ray Palen on June 8, 2024

A Lovely Lie
by Jaime Lynn Hendricks