FeaturedMystery & Crime

Lies of Men


Worth reading 😎

A journalist discovers disturbing intersections between her own past and the story she's investigating, with a surprising twist at the end.

Lies of Men was the first Andrea Kellner mystery I read. There was enough background to understand her past without overburdening the story, and the plot kept me turning the pages—all the way to the unexpected conclusion.

The narrator is a journalist/sleuth dealing with men who, at best, are not listening to her; at worst, they are trying to silence her and steal her company. This book could be a fictional tract for the #metoo movement, and every woman is—in one way or another—abused. At times the "message" comes on too strong; fortunately, the story is saved from caricature by a token "baddie" on both sides of the sexist divide.

Though I was intrigued enough to keep reading, I have to admit to skimming the second half, wishing that the author had trusted the reader to figure out what Andrea was feeling/thinking. Strong dialogue, instead of being trusted to do the work on its own, is followed up with "author-splaining." For example, here's what happens when Andrea walks in on Borkowski, her managing editor, having a "seemingly intense" conversation with the consultant who's been hired to eliminate Andrea's job:

I looked from one to the other, wondering what I had interrupted.

"Yes?" Borkowski said, a flash of irritation crossing his eyes.

"I need a few minutes with you."

"Give me five. I'll meet you in the conference room."

I nodded, trying to read their faces, but I didn't like the vibe. Whatever was going on between them was not making me comfortable.

(Emphasis mine.)

And then, only one sentence after decamping to the conference room, Andrea tells us again: "For the second time, I had a feeling that some secret activity was going on behind my back."

As an author, I'm guessing this type of over-explanation is a leftover from the first draft—a necessary step to figure out what happens next. But this story (packaged inside a fantastic cover) could be much stronger without all the unnecessary telling. "We know that already!" I kept thinking. Maybe book #4 will get another copy edit before publication? Either way, I do agree with the last sentence of this book's synopsis: "If you like complex plots and smart, ballsy, crime-solving women, you’ll love Dana Killion’s page-turning series."

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About the author

Dana Killion grew up in a small town in northern Wisconsin, reading Nancy Drew and dreaming of living surrounded by tall buildings. Today she lives in Chicago and St Petersburg, Florida with her husband and her kitty, Isabel, happily avoiding temperatures below fifty. Lies of Men is her third book. view profile

Published on March 26, 2019

Published by

70000 words

Contains mild explicit content ⚠️

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Mystery & Crime

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