Sasha Arango - The Truth and Other Lies
"...an excellent piece of writing that is imaginative, very dark yet funny at the same time."
Henry Hayden appears to be the ultimate success. He has fame as an outstanding popular author, an understanding and loving wife and good friends to whom he is extremely generous. But there is a fatal flaw at the heart of his life: he is an extremely successful liar who can convince anyone of any truth that happens to suit him. Occasionally things do go wrong and this is the story of how Henry Hayden manufactures a convincing web of lies to ensure his reputation.
This is a very original book, albeit with subtle reminders of some very good novels. The hero, Henry Hayden, has a very similar outlook on life to Patricia Highsmith's, Mr Ripley and Hayden's outrageous behaviour delights and appals at the same time. He is a completely amoral character on one level, in that he will do anything to survive, but on another level he can be a very caring, generous and thoughtful friend; definitely an enigma.
The descriptions of the people of the little town where Hayden has ended up made me laugh and reminded me of the villagers of Clochemerle in their pragmatism and isolation from the rest of the country. It is deliberately set in an anonymous place but it could easily be somewhere near you.
This is an excellent piece of writing that is imaginative, very dark yet funny at the same time. The original is in German but the translation flows smoothly and never intrudes. I have not read many German thrillers but perhaps this will be the first of many.
Reviewed by: S.D.