The Liar's Lullaby

The Liar's Lullaby

3.6 15
by Meg Gardiner
     
 

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When a controversial female singer is murdered during a concert, forensic psychiatrist Jo Beckett fears the act was political. The polarizing pop star was also the President's ex-wife, with secrets to die for. Now, Jo finds herself in a race to extinguish the conspiracy rumor mill-before it incites a level of violence that reaches America's highest corridors of

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Overview

When a controversial female singer is murdered during a concert, forensic psychiatrist Jo Beckett fears the act was political. The polarizing pop star was also the President's ex-wife, with secrets to die for. Now, Jo finds herself in a race to extinguish the conspiracy rumor mill-before it incites a level of violence that reaches America's highest corridors of power.

Editorial Reviews

Anna Mundow
The secrets of Tasia's life lead Jo to the truth of the singer's death, and Gardiner charts that course skillfully. With the eye and ear of a keen reporter, she can capture the speech and manner of a self-important political staffer or a cynical cop, the pretentious ranting of a cyber-patriot or the e-mail venom of a deluded stalker.
—The Washington Post
Minneapolis Star-Tribune
Gardiner has created a tough, intelligent heroine who is as comfortable kicking butt and bad guys in the alleys of San Francisco as she is in a medical lab examining carbon nanotechnology and its effects on the brain.
Booklist
Breathless suspense, slick plotting and a cast of compelling characters make this a solid addition to Edgar-winner Gardiner's dossier of superlative thrillers.
Stephen King
If you read Sue Grafton, Lee Child, Janet Evanovich, Michael Connelly, or Nelson DeMille, you're going to think Meg Gardiner is a gift from heaven.
USA Today
Hitchcockian scenes of suspense will rock even the most jaded thriller reader.
Orlando Sun-Sentinel
Stephen King was right. . . . Steeped in nonstop action, psychological terror and an evocative use of the San Francisco background, The Dirty Secrets Club brims with surprises and unpredictable twists.
Jeffery Deaver
Gardiner makes every one of her characters leap alive off the page, and I personally am in love with the most compelling of them all, Jo Beckett.
Chicago Sun-Times
A book you just can't put down. The Memory Collector is a first-class thriller with nonstop action."
Publishers Weekly
Jo Beckett investigates a national security threat in Edgar-winner Gardiner’s absorbing third thriller to feature the San Francisco forensic psychiatrist (after The Memory Collector). When troubled country singer Tasia McFarland—who happens to be the U.S. president’s ex-wife—dies of a gunshot wound to the neck during a stunt that goes awry at a huge outdoor concert, Jo’s SFPD friend, Lt. Amy Tang, asks Jo to help determine whether Tasia, who fired a Colt .45 automatic as part of the stunt, shot herself or was shot by an assassin. The ballistics are inconclusive. As Jo looks into the sordid details of Tasia’s life, an antigovernment extremist, Tom Paine, who runs a conspiracy-fueled Web site called Tree of Liberty, accuses people in the government—in particular, President Robert McFarland—of orchestrating Tasia’s death and demands punishment for those responsible. Despite the broad scope of Jo’s inquiry, Gardiner mostly manages to keep the far-reaching plot on course. (June)
Kirkus Reviews
The SFPD once more calls on forensic psychiatrist Jo Beckett, this time to help explain the shooting death of a singer/songwriter whose showy comeback entrance to a concert stage was cut short when she was shot halfway down her zipline. Tasia McFarland has always been a wild woman, so it's no surprise when she plans to zip down a wire to join her lover, rocker Searle Lacroix, onstage at the Giants' ballpark, amid billows of manufactured smoke. The surprise is that when she emerges from the smoke, Tasia's been shot in the neck, evidently with the .45 she was holding herself only seconds before-a weapon that's legally registered to her long-ago husband, Robert McFarland, who in the meantime has been elected President of the United States. Clearly there are some tricky angles here. Lt. Amy Tang, the homicide detective who's on the scene along with Jo and her sister Tina, wants to know whether Tasia shot herself or had help. At first the case for suicide seems overwhelming. After bipolar Tasia went off her meds, a timely Xanax put her into a mixed state in which she was both excited and depressed. On the other hand, she told anyone who'd listen that she feared an assassination attempt that was only the beginning of a bigger plot (against the president?) and left behind two new songs she claimed would hold the clues to her murder. Though she sheds curiously little light on Tasia's state of mind, Jo does some smart detective work linking the volatile performer to both a determined stalker and a right-wing conspiracy whose home base is the Tree of Liberty website published by one Tom Paine. The ambitious, preposterous plot is filled with interoffice power plays, suspect political operatives, double-crosses by media types and action sequences, which Gardiner (The Memory Collector, 2009, etc.) pumps up brilliantly. Catnip for Jeffery Deaver fans who can't wait for their next fix and like-minded souls who value constant stimulation over plausibility.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780451233875
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/07/2011
Series:
Jo Beckett Series, #3
Pages:
384
Sales rank:
717,472
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 6.60(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

Stephen King
[Meg Gardiner is] the next suspense superstar.
Jeffery Deaver
Gardiner makes every one of her characters leap alive off the page, and I personally am in love with the most compelling of them all, Jo Beckett.

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