The Book of Lies

The Book of Lies

3.7 190
by Brad Meltzer

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Brad Meltzer--author of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Book of Fate--returns with his most thrilling and emotionally powerful novel to date.

In Chapter Four of the Bible, Cain kills Abel. It is the world's most famous murder. But the Bible is silent about one key detail: the weapon Cain used to kill his brother.…  See more details below


Brad Meltzer--author of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Book of Fate--returns with his most thrilling and emotionally powerful novel to date.

In Chapter Four of the Bible, Cain kills Abel. It is the world's most famous murder. But the Bible is silent about one key detail: the weapon Cain used to kill his brother. That weapon is still lost to history.

In 1932, Mitchell Siegel was killed by three gunshots to his chest. While mourning, his son dreamed of a bulletproof man and created the world's greatest hero: Superman. And like Cain's murder weapon, the gun used in this unsolved murder has never been found.

Until now.

Today in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Cal Harper comes face-to-face with his family's greatest secret: his long-lost father, who's been shot with a gun that traces back to Mitchell Siegel's 1932 murder. But before Cal can ask a single question, he and his father are attacked by a ruthless killer tattooed with the anicent markings of Cain. And so begins the chase for the world's first murder weapon.

What does Cain, history's greatest villain, have to do with Superman, the world's greatest hero? And what do two murders, committed thousands of years apart, have in common? This is the mystery at the heart of Brad Meltzer's riveting and utterly intriguing new thriller

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Editorial Reviews

In the archetypal homicide, Cain, a farmer, kills his brother Abel, a shepherd. The earliest account, in the fourth chapter of Genesis, lacks one telling detail: What weapon did Cain use? Two thousand years later, another murder occurs, this time in a small New York store. Shopkeeper Mitchell Siegel dies in a hail of bullets, but, like Cain's primordial weapon, the gun has never been recovered. Of course, the violent death of a single Lithuanian immigrant has scarcely any imprint on bustling New York, but it does have a major effect on one young man, Mitchell's teenage son, Jerry. Perhaps in an effort to exorcise that piercing event, Jerry Siegel created a bulletproof man, who became the world's most famous superhero: Superman. In The Book of Lies, novelist/poet Brad Meltzer interlaces the story of Cain and the story behind Superman and brings them kicking and screaming into our own time.
Publishers Weekly

When a homeless man with a gunshot wound is revealed to be Calvin Harper's long-lost father, Cal must scramble his resources while dealing with a watershed of emotions. Father and son are drawn into a mystery involving the recovery of the supposed murder weapon Cain used in the Bible. Hints eventually lead them to seek out the remnants of Superman creator Jerry Siegel and solve the mystery behind the death of Siegel's father. Meltzer executes another spellbinding tale that continually keeps readers guessing, along with a good mix of biblical and comic book lore. Scott Brick works the diverse range of character voices well and remains masterful at drawing out the text. His pauses, hesitations and voice breaks provide an added level of suspense. The musical interludes at stressful parts of the story or chapters endings are superfluous given Brick's performance. Nearly a dozen illustrations relevant to the story line are provided as bonus material on the last CD. A Grand Central hardcover (Reviews, July 28). (Sept.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

Meltzer ( follows his #1 New York Times best-selling The Book of Fate with this tale involving two murders committed thousands of years apart. Narrator Scott Brick ( tries to keep the pace moving, but all the riddles, secret writings, puzzles, odd characters, and coincidences make the plot challenging to follow. This may appeal to fans of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code and other of Meltzer's popular works; for large public libraries. [Audio clip and book trailer available through; illustrations on CD #10 of the unabridged edition and CD #6 of the abridged edition; the Grand Central Publishing hc received a starred review, LJ8/08.-Ed.]
—Barbara Valle

School Library Journal

Adult/High School

Meltzer builds suspenseful fiction on a previously little-explored historical nugget: Jerry Siegel, the teenage creator of Superman, lost his father in an unsolved murder in 1932. The author offers a compelling theoretical solution by way of an adult protagonist who is dealing with his conflicted feelings about his own father. Cal works for a rescue mission, picking up vagrants in need of shelter, when he stumbles across a man who turns out to be the father who abandoned him in childhood. The two men join forces in pursuit of what they believe is the lost Book of Cain, the weapon used in the Bible's original murder scene. Meltzer invokes multiple viewpoints as Cal, his father, a mysterious young woman who seems to have befriended the father, a rogue ex-cop, and a hot Federal agent converge on Cleveland in search of the biblical treasure. Teens with a taste for international conspiracies, religion-spouting bad guys, and identity-switching will enjoy this fast ride that leaves some solid and intriguing questions in the wake of its driving plot. Suggest this one to kids who enjoy the likes of Dan Brown, as well as superhero comics.-Francisca Goldsmith, Halifax Public Libraries, Nova Scotia

"Meltzer has earned the right to belly up to the bar with John Grisham, Scott Turow, and David Baldacci."
Miami Herald
Meet the next John Grisham.
--- Miami Herald
"Meet the next John Grisham."
—- Miami Herald
"Meet the next John Grisham."
From the Publisher
"Meltzer has earned the right to belly up to the bar with John Grisham, Scott Turow, and David Baldacci."—People"

After listening to Scott Brick's performances of two books in a row, the listener can really appreciate his versatility....Brick handles this clever but complicated plot with kid gloves. He plays the brothers, whose personalities are opposites, equally well and gives Meltzer's story line a rich and exciting reading. His performance is one in a million." (Praise for The Millionaires)—AudioFile Magazine"

Meet the next John Grisham."——- Miami Herald

WINNER OF AN EARPHONES AWARD: "Brad Meltzer's latest entry to the NYT Bestsellers list sounds as good as it looks, thanks in large part to Scott Brick, who brings a sense of urgency to the characters.... Brick brings out the humanity of Meltzer's hero, who isn't a superman who laughs in the face of death, but a regular guy.... And no one does icy villains like Brick. Better allow some extra drive time—you won't want to turn this off." (Praise for THE BOOK OF FATE)—AudioFile Magazine

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Product Details

Grand Central Publishing
Publication date:
Sold by:
Hachette Digital, Inc.
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File size:
2 MB


Meet the Author

Brad Meltzer is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Inner Circle, The Book of Fate, and seven other bestselling thrillers. In addition to his fiction, Brad is one of the only authors to ever have books on the bestseller list for nonfiction (History Decoded), advice (Heroes for My Son and Heroes for My Daughter), children's books (I Am Amelia Earhart and I Am Abraham Lincoln) and even graphic books (Justice League of America). He is also the host of Brad Meltzer's Decoded on the History Channel, and Brad Meltzer's Lost History on H2. He currently lives in Florida. You can find much more about him at You can also see what he's doing right now at and on Twitter @bradmeltzer.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
Place of Birth:
New York, New York
B.A., University of Michigan; J.D., Columbia University

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