The Practice of Deceit: A Novel

( 10 )

Overview

When Eric Lavender meets the attorney Colleen O'Brien Golden, his position as one of Manhattan's chic psychotherapists and most eligible bachelors suddenly loses its appeal. The sexy, stylish Colleen lures him to live with her and her young daughter in the exclusive suburb of Scarsdale. To his amazement, Eric is besotted and soon settles into the unexpected bliss of marriage and domesticity with their new baby and his loving stepdaughter. He even becomes a local hero when the ...

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The Practice of Deceit: A Novel

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Overview

When Eric Lavender meets the attorney Colleen O'Brien Golden, his position as one of Manhattan's chic psychotherapists and most eligible bachelors suddenly loses its appeal. The sexy, stylish Colleen lures him to live with her and her young daughter in the exclusive suburb of Scarsdale. To his amazement, Eric is besotted and soon settles into the unexpected bliss of marriage and domesticity with their new baby and his loving stepdaughter. He even becomes a local hero when the police turn to him for help in resolving a hostage crisis.
But Eric's transformation comes to an abrupt halt when the police knock on his door again—this time with handcuffs. He and Colleen are caught up in an explosive conflict of interest involving their clients. When Eric discovers that Colleen has gone to extreme lengths to conceal her secret past, she retaliates with horrendous charges against him. Eric must uncover the truth before his children, his career, and his freedom are taken from him forever.
As she did in her bestseller Almost, Elizabeth Benedict navigates the turbulent waters of love, law, psychology, and ethics with biting wit and penetrating insight. The Practice of Deceit is a razor-sharp novel of marriage—and divorce—gone awry.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Eric Lavender, a 40-something Manhattan therapist, transforms from hard-core bachelor to blissed-out family man then alleged felon in Benedict's new psychological thriller (after Almost). Soon after Eric falls for Colleen O'Brien Golden, strawberry blonde Scarsdale divorce lawyer and single mom, and her toddler, Zoe, an unplanned pregnancy precipitates marriage and his relocation to the suburbs, where much to his surprise, he finds contentment in domesticity. But Eric's creeping suspicions that Colleen-"with her milky breasts... and her blazing feminist ideals to help women and children suffering at the hands of so many deadbeat dads"-is not the woman she seems put an end to their idyll after a few years. The story about her first husband doesn't add up, and it turns out that her book, Your Fair Share! Women and Divorce, was ghostwritten. On top of this shaky foundation of trust, Eric and Colleen encounter a disastrous professional conflict of interest-he unwittingly takes a client whose wife has hired Colleen as her divorce lawyer. The upshot: Eric finds himself cuffed, jailed and falsely accused of molesting Zoe. This intelligently written and briskly plotted update on the femme fatale story makes an absorbing beach read. (June) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
"The story practically spills into your lap as you turn the pages...A lot of wicked fun."—Alan Cheuse, NPR's "All Things Considered"

"Entertaining...clever."—Deirdre Donahue USA Today

"Intelligently written and briskly plotted update on the femme fatale story makes an absorbing beach read." Publishers Weekly

"It's smart entertainment by a very smart writer—the best kind of summer reading."—Janice P. Nimura Newsday

"the stunning new break-out thriller"—New Mystery Reader

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780618710515
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 5/8/2006
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,384,429
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Elizabeth Benedict

Elizabeth Benedict is the author of Almost, which was selected as a New York Times Notable Book, a Washington Post Book World Book of the Year, a Newsweek Best Fiction Book of the Year, and a Best Book of the Year by National Public Radio’s Fresh Air. She is also the author of three other novels, as well as The Joy of Writing Sex: A Guide for Fiction Writers. She lives in New York City.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

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(6)

4 Star

(3)

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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2005

    One Helluva Read

    If you are interested in relationships, marriage, divorce, and/or human nature, don't miss this suspenseful and satisfying read. It's worth the night's sleep you might lose. Benedict is a witty, funny, and wise writer.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 26, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    The Practice of Deceit

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book! The author's flow is very easy and just enough suspense to keep me wanting to get to bed and read more...

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2005

    Read this - cancel your appt with your therapist

    It's a MUST- if you're looking for a book to take to the beach (or pool or park) that isn't trash but isn't Tolstoy, this is it. I have never read Benedict before but I'll read her others now. This is great - perfect for the summer. Try it, I promise you won't be disappointed.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 11, 2005

    a wonderful, suspenseful novel

    This is a terrific novel with suspense,twists, humor and depth. The writing is excellent and held my interest throughout. The characters are nuanced and muti-dimensional. BRAVO, Ms. Benedict!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 11, 2005

    Very good book!

    First book of Benedict's that I read and it was great. It teaches you that not everything is as it seems and it makes you wonder about your own relationships. This is definitely a thought provoking book and it will keep you captivated until the end when everything unravels. I highly recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2005

    Love it, love it, love it!

    This was the first time I've read Elizabeth Benedict, but it most certainly won't be the last. Combine superb writing, intriguing characters, and a plot loaded with twists, and you've got serious sleep deprivation. It was well worth every lost wink!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2005

    psychological thriller

    A thoughtful page-turner about marriage, divorce, and the criminal justice system, writtten with intelligenc and wit so you don't have to feel guilty about loving it. The writing is terrific.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2005

    What a Tangled Web.....

    This story builds to a fine point where reality is just out of reach. The best points are on the way to the climax because you are not sure what could possibly be the outcome. There is a promise or two of a great and satisfying climax, but it falls a bit too short and too stale. While the first 2/3 of the book really captured a sense of danger, the last 1/3 was disappointing in the way it was handled, the energy of the beginning just stopped. Reader beware.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2005

    I almost gave up on this book.....

    After the first 57 pages of this book I thought about giving up on it. It was moving slowly and I was bored. But I decided to keep going and I am really glad that I did. I ended up flying through the rest of the book because it was so good. I would highly recommend this book. Stick through the first few chapters because the rest of the book is worth it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews

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