Customer Reviews for

Necessary Lies

Average Rating 4.5
( 40 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 40 Customer Reviews
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  • Posted April 24, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    An Extraordinary and Inspirational Novel!

    I received an advance reading copy of Necessary Lies and could not wait to dive in! I stayed up all night and finished it this morning! An extraordinary and inspirational novel-cannot stop thinking about it----Diane did an outstanding job with a complex topic and her excellent research skills were definitely reflective throughout the book with careful plot planning and storytelling.

    Her best work thus far! From the character development (loved Jane/Ivy), the dialect, insight, the setting – she nailed it! A beautiful story of loss, love, struggles, difficult choices, and redemption (loved the ending). I could very much relate being from the rural south (NC) in the sixties.

    Diane offers an insight as to the difficult choices and a close-up of how minors with little or no control over certain circumstances--with the feeling of no way out of their environment in order to change the vicious cycle---- Combine this with others having the power to make choices for them without thinking of their future or their best interests. (It was amazing how much control social workers had over situations during this era.)

    Hats off to the tenacious professionals who “cross the lines” and take a chance for the welfare of their clients and their futures. Set in rural Grace County, North Carolina in a time of state-mandated sterilizations and racial tension, Necessary Lies tells the story of these two young women, seemingly worlds apart, but both haunted by tragedy. A Must Read! I look forward to the e-book The First Lie as well.

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 15, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Heart-Breaking, Riveting, Eye-Opening

    Set in rural Grace County, North Carolina in a time of state-mandated sterilizations and racial tension, Jane, a newly married social worker, who “wants to make a difference,” and Ivy, part of a poverty-stricken family whose remaining members each carry the result of tainted secrets in the family closet, are thrown together by circumstance and must ask themselves: how can you know what you believe is right, when everyone is telling you it’s wrong? Necessary Lies by Diane Chamberlain is a gut-wrenching tale of poverty, bureaucracy and the will to survive against the odds while doing the right thing at any cost.

    From page one, I was thrown into an unbelievable page out of history, wondering how ANYONE or any government could impose such mandates on another. Told from alternating points of view, I felt and saw both sides of life, from the day to day struggles to the mental turmoil and desperation felt by Ivy and Jane living in an era and place so different from anything I have ever known.

    Diane Chamberlain writes with a flair for keeping this real and raw, yet not so over-powering that the reader feels they are reading horror fiction. Her style is eye-opening and will keep you turning each page, hoping for a happy ending for the well-drawn characters. Expect this one to stay with you for a long time.

    I strongly suggest you read The First Lie, a short story prequel to Necessary Lies. You’ll be glad you did. I was provided an ARC edition from NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press in exchange for my honest review.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    The strength of the human spirit definitely rules this storyline

    The strength of the human spirit definitely rules this storyline. This is another good one to have young ones read not only for the history of it but for the realization of what is important in life and what isn't. This is a beautifully written and memorable book to recommend and maybe even reread.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2013

    Great Book! One of Diane Chamberlain's best!

    Some books are unforgettable and "Necessary Lies" is one of those. The characters, plots, interwoven story is sad and beautiful. I have read most of Diane Chamberlain's books and this is one of her very best. It is the kind of book I want to tell all my friends who read that this is a must read. It is so good!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 17, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Picture a small southern town fifty years ago. Fifteen-year-old

    Picture a small southern town fifty years ago. Fifteen-year-old Ivy Hart is a tenant on a tobacco farm. Unlike other young girls her age, she is the head of household. Ivy cares for her grandmother, older sister and baby nephew. With her grandmother's aging, her older sister's mental illness, her baby nephew's slow development skills and her own epilepsy, Ivy struggles to hold it together.

    Jane is a newlywed who wishes to be independent and work. To her husband's dismay, she takes on a position as Grace County's newest social worker. Turns out Jane is too nice for social work. Before you know it, Jane becomes emotionally attached to the Hart family and at a crossroads whether to take a step back or risk her career to help clients.

    The characters in Necessary Lies are fictional but the Eugenics Sterilization Program is very real. According to the Author's Note, North Carolina sterilized over 7,000 of its citizens. North Carolina is the only state that gave social workers the power to petition for sterilization of individuals. If it weren't for Diane Chamberlain, this program would be unknown to me. Color me thankful to the author for bringing awareness, then color me appalled that so many individuals were affected by this program from 1929 until 1975.

    Diane Chamberlain is an international bestselling author. I have read three of her twenty-two novels (The Good Father, The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes and The Midwife's Confession). All of the books I've read are highly recommended. The stories are deep, detailed and touch your heart. After reading the prequel The First Lie, I was anxious to see the story unfold and was satisfied with the full-circle ending of Necessary Lies. I will not hesitate to read a Diane Chamberlain novel and hope to catch up on her earlier released novels. I suggest my bookhearts do the same. Literary Marie of Precision Reviews

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 27, 2013

    Heartbreaking story that will make you look at the lives of others in a different light.

    I had no knowledge of the practices of the injustices done to the poor, illiterate, and blacks in this nation during the 50's and 60's. This book was a real eye opener for me.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 26, 2013

    A GREAT BOOK!

    This book just completely takes you into their life, you feel and hurt for them. The ending is a little quick, that's why the 4 star rating.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 25, 2013

    Highly recommend, hard to out down.

    I am not finished reading this book, but look forward every night to read a couple of chapters. It's one of this books that's hard to stop reading.
    The characters are easy to get to know and understand. It's a story of prejudices and tender hearts. If you want warmth and love, this is the book for you.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2013

    very enlightening book about a subject I was unaware of !

    I enjoyed this book very much, learning about the Eugenics program carriedd out in N. Carolina. The characters were so interesting as all from Diane Chamberlain are. The last chapter was a gem!!!

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2014

    Amazing

    This novel is amazing. I love the story and the truth mixed in.
    I love the questions it has you ask yourself. I just discovered this author and will read everything i can by her. This book is meant to be read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2014

    .

    Unforgetable!

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  • Posted March 6, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Good Read!

    I loved this book and the author came highly recommended by many long time readers. Storyline about the North Carolina life working the tobacco farms was interesting and sad. The Social Services Department had a lot of control over the lives of their welfare recipients with extremely unusual circumstances as to procreation. One newly hired social worker decides to make a difference with some hard choices and even harder results. I look forward to reading more of Ms. Chamberlain's books.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2014

    Awesome book!

    Very well written. The story line is great and the characters are well written. This is the first book ive read by this author and i will certainly be reading more.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2014

    Great book

    I really enjoyed this story. Great characters, touching.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2014

    Good read!

    A captivating story with some insight to poverty during civil rights movement and moral dilemmas faced by both blacks and whites during that time.

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  • Posted January 28, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    At fifteen years old, Ivy Hart has known true heartbreak and wha

    At fifteen years old, Ivy Hart has known true heartbreak and what it means to be responsible for others. She takes care of her ailing grandmother, her mentally challenged sister and nephew, while going to school and working long hours on the tobacco farm. Her family is on welfare and is regularly visited by Grace County’s social workers, but she couldn’t even imagine how her life would change when she is introduced to Jane Forrester. Jane just got married and her husband wants her to be the typical country club wife, but she chooses to do more with her life. When she interviewed to be a social worker, she had no idea the types of people and the amount of poverty that she would be faced with on a daily basis. When she meets the Hart family, she feels a deep connection with the young girls and vows to help them, even if it costs her everything.

    Necessary Lies is a poignant tale about doing what you feel is right, despite what everyone else says. This book is centered on the sterilization laws that North Carolina had in effect to prevent feeble-minded, poor people from reproducing. This subject matter is heartbreaking and could make the book a very depressing read, but Chamberlain makes sure that the characters and readers sense that feeling of hope. Chamberlain does an excellent job of demonstrating the strengths of the human spirit with each of her characters. By balancing the points of view, between twenty-two year old Jane and fifteen year old Ivy, readers will get to see the whole picture. This book is a must read for reading groups and fans Women’s Literature.

    Notes:
    This review was originally written for My Sister's Books.
    This review originally appeared on the Ariesgrl Book Reviews website.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2013

    awesome book

    buy it, its worth it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2013

    Great book

    I so enjoyed this book, the characters were real, the story line captures your inerest, and does not let go until the story ends. The fact that this was really happening so recently was a shock to me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2013

    This was my first Diane Chamberlain book. I enjoyed it very much

    This was my first Diane Chamberlain book. I enjoyed it very much and will  read other books by her.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2013

    A Great Read

    This was a beautifully written and wonderful story. The subject matter is one that many will have forgotten about or have never known about. It was so well presented and the whole story was just excellent. While a work of fiction, it delves into many truths about Eugenics during the 50's in the south and everyone needs to read this book.

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