The Last Lie

( 82 )

Overview


Thankfully Alan and Lauren Gregory aren't on the guest list when their affluent new neighbors hold a housewarming party-because the next morning, a rape accusation rocks the town of Boulder. And though Alan discovers he has a most unusual perspective into what truly happened after the party-he may not be able to stop crucial witnesses-and people close to him-from being murdered...
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The Last Lie

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Overview


Thankfully Alan and Lauren Gregory aren't on the guest list when their affluent new neighbors hold a housewarming party-because the next morning, a rape accusation rocks the town of Boulder. And though Alan discovers he has a most unusual perspective into what truly happened after the party-he may not be able to stop crucial witnesses-and people close to him-from being murdered...
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In White's winning 18th Alan Gregory thriller (after The Siege), the Boulder, Colo., psychologist gets off on the wrong foot with his new neighbor, TV-star lawyer Mattin Snow, by walking his dogs on Snow's property. In the wake of Snow's housewarming party, to which Alan wasn't invited, an unnamed female guest claims Snow raped her. Before the case can hit the press, the lawyers for both Snow and the victim close ranks and begin to work out a private financial settlement with the victim agreeing not to testify (a parallel to the real-life Kobe Bryant case a few years back, also in Colorado). Gregory becomes entangled in the case ethically when he learns that the victim is the client of a psychologist-in-training whom he's supervising. Series fans will enjoy catching up with the domestic doings of Alan and his wife, Lauren, who are beginning to patch up their marriage following recent infidelities, and their two children. (Aug.)
Library Journal
In White's (The Siege, Dead Time) latest thriller featuring psychologist Alan Gregory, a housewarming party ends in a suspected rape. The event takes place at the home of Alan's new neighbors, a celebrated lawyer and his socialite wife. This would be cause for some concern at any time, but Alan's interest is piqued by an incident involving him while walking his dogs in the area on the night in question and that another psychologist he supervises may be treating the alleged victim. Alan spends most of the novel trying to piece together what happened and hampered because his wife Lauren and best cop friend, Sam Purdy, have knowledge that they are unable to share with him. Because events are revealed in fragments and there are so many strands that must meld, White must be on top of his game to hold everything together, a challenge that he is able to meet.Verdict The slow reveal of previous incidents is reminiscent of David Ellis's In the Company of Liars, and White keeps the suspense high as always. Not his best work, but still an enjoyable read for thriller fans.—Craig Shufelt, Fort McMurray P.L., Alta.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780451234285
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/2/2011
  • Series: Dr. Alan Gregory Series
  • Pages: 528
  • Sales rank: 269,418
  • Product dimensions: 4.20 (w) x 7.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Stephen White is a clinical psychologist and the New York Times bestselling author of sixteen novels, including Kill Me and Dry Ice. He lives in Colorado.

Biography

Anyone who has ever tried his or her hand at writing has surely heard the sage advice "write what you know." Stephen White has most-assuredly taken that bit of wisdom to heart in creating his thrilling series of Alan Gregory novels. A clinical psychologist, White has crafted a character with a similar background that has also benefited from his fifteen years of professional practice.

White has been keeping fans of psychological thrillers on the edges of their seats ever since he published his first novel Privileged Information in 1991. The book introduced his literary alter ego Dr. Alan Gregory and made ample use of everything he'd gleaned while working as a practicing psychologist. "There are two benefits of my previous experience as a psychologist that I consider invaluable to my life as a writer," White revealed in an interview on his web site (www.authorstephenwhite.com). "The first is that my work gave me a chance to observe and study the infinite varieties of motivation that human beings have for their behavior. The other is that being a psychotherapist exposed me to dialogue in its purest form. For eight to ten hours a day over a period of fifteen years I had the privilege of sitting and listening to a wide variety of people just talk. I can't imagine a better training ground for writing dialogue."

As for how similar he truly is to his most-famous creation beyond their shared profession, White says, "The similarities don't exactly end there but there's no need to exaggerate them, either. Although neither of us is a model of mental health, his neuroses are different than mine. And he has advantages that I never had as a psychotherapist. First, he has the benefit of all my years of experience. And second, I get to think about his lines as long as I'd like. Real patients never offer that luxury." The resulting debut novel won rave reviews from the likes of The New York Daily News, Publisher's Weekly, and The Library Journal and established White as a writer to watch.

White followed Privileged Information with over a dozen additional installments of the Alan Gregory adventures. The latest may very well be the most exciting and psychologically provocative episode yet. In Kill Me, a happily-married extreme sports enthusiast and patient of Gregory's makes a deal with a clandestine organization called Death Angels Inc. that may very well bring his life to an untimely end. As always, Dr. Alan Gregory is present, but he plays more of a background role than he does in most of White's other novels. Still, fans of White's previous work will surely be captivated by the novel that Booklist has deemed "Bizarre, thrilling, and oh so much fun" and fellow bestselling writer Michael Connelly (Blood Work, The Closers) asserts is "his best yet."

In any event, White has no immediate plans of abandoning Gregory to write a non-series novel. "My series is commercially successful, thanks to all of you," he says. "As important for me as the commercial success is, the fact [is] that the series is also creatively flexible.... [I] anticipate staying with the series as long as the readers are interested..." If that's the case, then readers can expect the Dr. Alan Gregory to have a long and psychologically healthy life.

Good To Know

Contrary to the rumor mill, the Stephen White who created Alan Gregory is not the same Stephen White who has written a series of books about...ahem ... Barney the Purple Dinosaur. However, White admits that he has occasionally signed the other Stephen White's Barney books when asked to.

For those who are wondering what ever happened to the seemingly long-lost book Saints and Sinners, which was excerpted in Private Practices, you may have already read it without even realizing. Shortly before publication, the title Saints and Sinners was changed to Higher Authority. Some interesting outtakes from our interview with White:

"Jonathan Kellerman and I were colleagues in the early 1980's before either of us were novelists. At a time when our nascent field was very small, we were both psychologists specializing in the psychological aspects of childhood cancer. Jon was at Los Angeles Childrens Hospital. I was at The Children's Hospital in Denver."

"My brother is a better writer than I am."

"One of my first jobs was as a tour guide at Universal Studios. I lasted five weeks. That's two weeks longer than I lasted as a creative writing major during my freshman year at the University of California."

"I worked at Chez Panisse in Berkeley in 1971-72, running the upstairs café, waiting tables, and occasionally doing some cooking. Two of my bosses were Alice Waters and Jeremiah Tower. They both cook better than I write. Jeremiah actually writes better than I cook."

"I learned to fly an airplane before I learned to drive a car".

"I'm a lucky man. I've spent much of my adult life in two terrific, rewarding careers. In the first, as a clinical psychologist, I spent eight to twelve hours a day in a room with one other person. In the second, as a writer, I spend a similar number of hours a day in a room with no other person, though sometimes I'm blessed with the company of a dog or two."

"A primary difference between the two experiences? As a psychotherapist, only one other person -- my patient -- typically observed my work. Virtually no one ever critiqued it. As a novelist, literally millions of people observe my work, and most feel no compunction whatsoever about critiquing it. Being a writer is a lovely thing. But adapting to the reality of being read has been a constant source of wonder for me."

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    1. Hometown:
      Colorado
    1. Date of Birth:
      August 20, 1951
    2. Place of Birth:
      Long Island, New York
    1. Education:
      B.A., UC Berkeley, 1972; M.A., University of Colorado, Boulder, 1975; Ph.D., 1979
    2. Website:

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 82 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(20)

4 Star

(25)

3 Star

(20)

2 Star

(9)

1 Star

(8)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 83 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 23, 2010

    Realistic with Electric Tempo

    Shutting the final page of White's newest installment to the popular Alan Gregory series, "The Last Lie" was akin to saying goodbye to a friend before a long journey. Realistic vibrations surge through the pages with an electric tempo, making it effortless to become acquainted or reacquainted with the Gregory family and other assorted cast members.

    The situation is not a simple one. A crime has been committed mere feet from Alan Gregory's front door and the sanctity of his family's home and close-knit neighborhood has been violated. It quickly becomes clear that obvious fact-finding routes are shut down as his wife-an assistant district attorney-and his closest friend, detective Sam Purdy refuse to speak. Gregory, feeling as if the integral facts of the case are being spoon fed to him refuses to allow a cover-up when the corpse of a potential witness is discovered.

    Moving quickly to uncover the truth, Gregory is willing to damage his career or at the very least, his reputation to keep his family safe from a possible murderer and rapist. The search behind this shocking crime moves into overdrive when he realizes that his son has become the target of a madman.

    With faultless pace, White excels at constructing tension infused situations and multilayered, believable characters in this intricate narrative.

    Reviewed by Suspense Magazine
    www.suspensemagazine.com

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 15, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    an intriguing thriller

    In Boulder, Colorado, psychologist Dr. Alan Gregory and wife Assistant District Attorney Lauren meet new neighbors renowned attorney Mattin Snow and his wife. Alan and Lauren are worried how their adopted son Jonas will react to the sale of his family home, but he conceals his feelings. Meanwhile the day after a welcome to the neighborhood party, a widow claims she was raped at the Gregory house where she was sleeping off to much wine.

    Lauren and their friend BPD Detective Sam Purdy and his partner Detective Lucy Davenport investigate. Alan obtains information on the allegation from his peer Hella Zoet who says the victim "The Burning Man Woman" formerly dubbed "The Three Wood Widow" called her to tell her about being acquaintance raped. Soon a witness is dead and Alan fears more will follow.

    Though there appears to be major conflicts if interest issues (then again there is Justice Scalia argument otherwise); the latest Dr. Gregory case is an intriguing thriller as he and his wife (with the cops) compete with their respective investigations; each side going down a different not quite parallel path. Action-packed, but character driven, fans of the series will enjoy Gregory back in Colorado after a stint in New England (see The Siege).

    Harriet Klausner

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    Recommend strongly

    If you are a fan of this series, you gotta read this book!!!

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  • Posted November 16, 2012

    Love his books!

    Love his books!

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  • Posted November 12, 2012

    I've read a number of Stephen White books prior to this one and

    I've read a number of Stephen White books prior to this one and have always enjoyed them, until now. This read was like homework to me...not thrilled about it but it had to be done. To be fair, I can't quite articulate why I had such a hard time with this one. It may well just be me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2011

    one of his best

    would recommend to friends

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 10, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    post

    post

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 7, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    But, A Lot of Lies

    This is a quite entertaining, yet immensely aggravating novel. The author chooses, of course, to release the facts at his leisure, and in the manner of his choosing. The latter is the aggravating part, as one method he uses is the role of the supervisor of the psychologist for the alleged victim. His behavior there is nothing short of creepy, and if I had been the supervised shrink I would have sued him for his intense slimy deceptions. Our hero is, at the least, a creep. He strives to be the all-knowing shrink, using his knowledge as power over others. Other than the dogs, the only real sympathetic character in this novel is the adopted son, and his future isn't looking too bright. But at least his parents are now in therapy.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted December 17, 2012

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    Posted August 19, 2010

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    Posted June 16, 2011

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