Thursday, August 1, 2013

Review: The Lies We Tell by Elizabeth Dunk

Title: The Lies We Tell
Author: Elizabeth Dunk
Published: August 1st 2013
Add It: Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
*An ARC was provided in exchange for an honest review*

From the author of Arranged to Love comes a romantic story of forgiveness, secrets, small towns and second chances.
Ten years ago, Todd Lansing stood over his father’s grave, his heart thumping out curses on Sia Collins for causing his death. When he returns to Oberon and sees Sia again, his heart thumps with a different emotion, one he fights with all the anger he still feels.
Sia didn’t commit the break-in that ended up killing Mr Lansing, but to admit that would send her father to jail. She has rebuilt her life in the small town, atoned for her accused crime, and carved out a niche using her talent with paint to reach out to the community, raise funds, and support her family.
When Todd finds out the truth, he can’t understand why Sia won’t speak out and clear her name, and it threatens to tear them apart. With her relationship with Todd on the line, will Sia choose loyalty or love?

Snagged it from Netgalley and was excited to dig into an Aussie novel. I don't remember when was the last time I read something by an Australian author. About a year ago, perhaps? I was extremely pumped for this story since the synopsis sounded awesome and come on! These are the type of stories I like when it comes to romance novels.
"Todd." Paul touched his arm. Todd shook it away. "Bro, it was ten years ago. You've got to get over it."
"Not until Sia Collins suffers the way I have."
It was a vow.

The story. Sia is a young artist who has plead guilty to a crime she didn't commit. Why did she do that? Oh, let's see.. She was trying to protect her awful father. Tod was a friend of Sia's 10 years ago and they even had a hint of a romance between them. When Tod's dad died, he though it was because of what Sia did. The crime she didn't commit. Only Tod doesn't know she wasn't at fault in any of this so he begins to hate her and the hate hasn't gone anywhere when he returns to take care of his sick mother and their paths cross again.

My thoughts. Sia and Tod as characters were good and I enjoyed wtaching both of them grow. What I liked best in this story were the side characters--Sia's friends who were adorable and just the kind of friends everyone would love to have. Sia's dad was so intolerateable that I wanted to puke every time he came up. He beat Sia, bullied her verbally, was drunk most of the time throughout the novel and had 3 kids in addition to Sia who she had to raise. He even tried to sabotage her career by trying to set fire on her paitings. He was disgusting as a father figure and as a human being. Props for Ms. Dunk for making me loathe a character that much. I also liked the dual POV a lot.

What I didn't enjoy was how everything felt rushed. I think it was in ch. 3 when Tod realized the mistake he had done by accusing Sia in everything and the story got off to fast-speeding through the plot. I didn't have time to connect with the characters. I'm the first one to admit that fast-paced stories are good and I enjoy them, but sometimes slow build makes me care more. Some of the revelations didn't exactly make sense to me either, although I was taken aback by some of them. Oh, and the smexy scenes were hawwwttt!!! ;-)

All in all, it's a decent book with some flaws, but they can be easily repaired in future books by Elizabeth. I felt the potential she has in her as a writer and I will definitely pick up something more by her in the future. Her characters are imperfect, but redeemable, and the storyline kept surprising me. It's sad that I wasn't able to connect more with the characters, but better luck next time!

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

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  1. I'm kinda of lost here. Todd thought that Sid is responsible for his father's death. Well I dunno after all those years of friendship, but still they I guess were young then. Anyhow I haven't heard of this one but it sounds interesting and then you say sexy and hot and well I'm sold. Great review Siiri! :)

    It's like the Obsidian couple all over again! >.<
    This sounds like an interesting story. But it's a shame about how everything just speeds up after a couple of chapters. I would be frustrated with it too and I can see why it was hard for you to connect with the characters. At least, there were some hot scenes though! xD
    Great review, Siiri! :)

  3. Hmm too bad this one felt so rushed. It sounds like it has a really neat premise and could have been really good if it was executed a bit better. Love the sound of Sia's friends, great secondary characters are a must!

  4. It's always good that the author has potential, and that you think you'll enjoy later books by her. The minute I read the "story" part of your review, I worried that the story would go too fast. It's really hard to get over that kind of prejudice and fall in love and deal with such a bleeper of a father in a satisfying, fully developed way while keeping the reader engaged. That being said, it's nice that you still enjoyed the steamy scenes ;). Hopefully her next work will live up to your expectations!

  5. This does sound like an interesting story. Too bad it was rushed so much. At least you had great secondary characters. Great review, Siiri! As always.

  6. Great review, doll! I actually and read it on Goodreads >.< I hate rushed plot and rushed everything in a book - romance, character building etc. I feel exactly the same as you - I don't have time to get a feel of these people and thus give a crap about what's happening to them. Sounds like you weren't completely put off from the book though the plot sounds like it still has some good qualities! :)

  7. Sia's dada sounds AWFUL. Even just from reading your review I can tell that I'll totally despise him and everything he does. It's a shame that the pacing was a little off here, but I'm glad you still enjoyed the book overall. I didn't realise the author has Australian! It's funny how that instantly becomes a selling point now. :) Great review!

  8. I think the father would make me sick. How can you hate your daughter so much?! I don't mind the fact that Tod finds out early on that Sia didn't do what he thought. I'd hate that portion to drag out. Glad to see you enjoyed this overall. Great review, Siiri! :)

  9. Sucks that it felt rushed for you. Sia's dad... at first, I have no words. Now I'm like -- he sounds horrible, ruthless, etc. So many adjectives could describe him! I would want to scream at him through the pages. When I first saw your review on my feed, I thought this was the NA book by the author who wrote Personal Demons. Guess they have similar covers. As always, love your review, Siiri :D

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