This Is How I Lied by Heather Gudenkauf
Published: May 2020 – Park Row Publishing
E-galley courtesy of the publisher and NetGalley
Everyone has a secret they’ll do anything to hide…
Twenty-five years ago, the body of sixteen-year-old Eve Knox was found in the caves near her home in small-town Grotto, Iowa—discovered by her best friend, Maggie, and her sister, Nola. There were a handful of suspects, including her boyfriend, Nick, but without sufficient evidence the case ultimately went cold.
For decades Maggie was haunted by Eve’s death and that horrible night. Now a detective in Grotto, and seven months pregnant, she is thrust back into the past when a new piece of evidence surfaces and the case is reopened. As Maggie investigates and reexamines the clues, secrets about what really happened begin to emerge. But someone in town knows more than they’re letting on, and they’ll stop at nothing to keep the truth buried deep. (publisher)
My take: Detective Maggie Kennedy-O’Keefe grew up in a small Iowa town. Her family lived on a cul-de-sac alongside a few other houses. Her best friend lived next door. When she was fifteen her best friend was murdered. Now, twenty-five years later, Maggie is in charge of going over the files of the unsolved murder. A clue has been found and, in the new age of DNA evidence, the chief of police wants to re-open the case.
This Is How I Lied is a dual-timeline whodunit. Told from Maggie’s POV and that of the dead girl’s sister the story moves between 1995, the year of the murder, and 2020. I thought Heather Gudenkauf did a great job revealing a trail of clues and although I had a strong suspicion of who did it, I wasn’t absolutely sure. There were plenty of possibilities.
This was a page turner that I read in a couple of days. There’s a creepiness factor that I don’t usually like to read but it was important to the story and made it more than a popcorn thriller. I appreciate that all of the characters were flawed to some degree – it made them more believable. I was very satisfied with how things wrapped up at the end. I’m glad I had a chance to read This Is How I Lied and look forward to reading more by this talented author.
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Heather Gudenkauf is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of many books, including The Weight of Silence and These Things Hidden. Heather graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in elementary education, has spent her career working with students of all ages. She lives in Iowa with her husband, three children, and a very spoiled German Shorthaired Pointer named Lolo. In her free time, Heather enjoys spending time with her family, reading, hiking, and running.