Book review: I Never Lie

This is a new feature on Words Worth Writing, in association with NetGalley.

I Never Lie, Jody Sabral
Thanks to NetGalley and to Canelo for an advance copy of I Never Lie by Jody Sabral.

First of all I’d like to say how much I enjoyed the concept behind this story. I think the whole subject of alcoholism is tricky and the author dealt with it so well I wonder how much experience she has of the condition herself … or if she knows someone. I thought the idea of a recovering alcoholic versus an alcoholic who truly believes she’s functioning and in control when in fact she totally isn’t was a very brave topic.

I also loved the mystery, even though I still got there first myself anyway. I actually think it’s quite obvious what’s going on, but I still found it interesting how the author arrived there too.

I was, however, disappointed with the numerous inconsistencies that should have been ironed out in one of the apparently many, many passes.

For example …

  • The gym membership card was a generic that could belong to anyone, according to the gym, and there was no way of knowing who it belonged to. And then the police managed to get not just the name of the gym card holder from the card, but the address and photographs too.
  • There was an instance where Mrs Wilcox greeted Alex at the door ‘clutching’ a pack of cigarettes and her eyes were waterlogged. But when they sit down together, just a few moments later, she is completely composed with ‘not a hint’ of emotion.
  • Then someone who had been in rehab for only two out of three weeks and who bought him/herself (no spoilers) a bottle of gin on the way in claimed not to have had a drink for three weeks.
  • The same person crushed an injured mouse to death in their bare hands, yet only a sentence later it was an injured fly.
  • After telling someone at the top of the book that milk doesn’t agree with her, Alex then asks for a cup of tea with milk in.
  • And finally, at the start of the story we’re led to believe that Greg was the one who ended the relationship by apparently kicking her out (chapter 1). But then we find out later (chapter 16) that she walked out on him before promptly disappearing.

This is such a shame, as it was otherwise a good story. And it all could have been avoided so easily.

I also found so many similar names to be quite confusing, especially when they worked at the same place (Alex and Ayla) or didn’t appear very often (Annabel and Anne Marie).

So while it was a good story dealt with in an unusual way, I think it still needed some development work. It’s too good a book for less than four stars, though, in my opinion, and worth a read if you’re not too precious about casual sex or substance addiction.

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