The Lie

The Lie

3.7 34
by Chad Kultgen

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With the publication of The Average American Male -- and the release of the shocking viral videos that made it a water-cooler sensation -- Chad Kultgen became one of the most talked-about authors of recent years. Now, with The Lie, Kultgen returns with an even more salacious -- yet also more searching -- novel that reaches deeper into the craven

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With the publication of The Average American Male -- and the release of the shocking viral videos that made it a water-cooler sensation -- Chad Kultgen became one of the most talked-about authors of recent years. Now, with The Lie, Kultgen returns with an even more salacious -- yet also more searching -- novel that reaches deeper into the craven inner workings of some of most depraved minds in America: college students.

His subjects are Brett, the rich hedonist whose appetite for sex is matched only by his contempt for women; his best friend, Kyle, the brooding science geek whose good intentions lead him to one disastrous decision; and Heather, the social-climbing sorority girl who has the power to destroy them both. As this devil's triangle plows through four years of college, Kultgen offers a astonishing take on the wild and amoral universe of college today: a frathouse world where sex is social currency, status means everything -- and winner takes all.

Abandon hope, all ye who enter here.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

This new novel from Average American Male author and YouTube icon Kultgen continues his testosterone-fueled fiction with this unapologetically sleazy campus romp. College freshman Kyle is more innocent and bookish than his best friend and BMOC Brett, whose endless appetite for women mirrors his bottomless bank account, and the scheming, promiscuous Heather, whom Kyle falls for, not realizing that Heather is only using him to get to Brett. Told in alternating points of view, the unsurprising plot follows them through four years and eventually revolves around the lie that Brett and Kyle concoct to teach Heather a lesson. Kultgen has a fluid narrative style and is an excellent mimic of college kid speech patterns (perhaps too well-"like" has never been so, like, overused); he can sling bawdy humor and the banal details of daily life, though his chops are less refined when he focuses above the waistline. Readers who got a kick out of Kultgen's first book will get a bang out of this. (Mar.)

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

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The Lie
A Novel

Chapter One

I fucking loved her like no guy has ever loved a girl. I know every guy has thought that about some girl, and that's exactly why I'm saying it. I'm also saying it because it was true.

We met about two weeks into our freshman year at SMU. I was majoring in biological sciences with the intent of getting into a good med school and she was getting a bachelor's degree in elementary education—she wanted to be a teacher. That seemed so sweet to me at the time. She was actually going to college to learn how to be a good teacher. I had a few teachers I liked along the way, but I'll never forget overhearing Mr. Campbell, my high school history teacher, telling Mrs. Baude, my high school calculus teacher, that he started teaching because it was the only job he could get and twenty-five years later it was the only job he could keep. I always kind of figured that's how most teachers became teachers, but she was actively pursuing the career. It was almost noble.

Classes had just barely started. I got a few syllabi, but I still hadn't even gone to some first classes yet because the hadn't been held. I was sitting in my dorm room in McElvaney, talking to my roommate, Dave, about some stupid bullshit like how he couldn't wait to get back home for Christmas so he could get some of his mom's cooking or some other inconsequential crap. Actually, maybe he was talking about which frats he wanted to try to get into the following semester. I had no interest in joining a frat, which he tried to convince me was the biggest mistake I would ever make. Later I found out he was a born-again Christian, and when he found out I didn't go to churchor subscribe to any religion he tried to convince me that burning in hell was almost as big a mistake as not getting into a frat. Anyway, whatever we were talking about got interrupted when we both heard a thud followed by some whimpering in the hallway outside our door. We went out to see what in the hell was going on and there was Heather. She was shit-faced beyond recognition.

Heather had apparently been too drunk to walk and had used her friend as a human crutch as they both stumbled back to McElvaney from whatever party they were at. Once they were in the hallway, her friend passed out, they both fell down, and Heather smashed her head against the wall. She had a small cut on her forehead and she was kind of crying or moaning—just making weird low noises, really. I remember genuinely feeling bad for her.

I asked her if she was okay and she said, "I need to lay down, I think."

She was hot as hell, there's no question about that. But there was something about her, something beyond just looking good, that attracted me to her almost immediately. I had a few girlfriends in high school I thought were cute or whatever, but not like this. I know it's gay, but it was her eyes or something. I don't know. Maybe it was just seeing her completely out-of-control drunk, too. But there was some kind of immediate attraction that wasn't like anything I'd ever felt. So, seeing a hot chick in need of aid, I did what any normal guy would have done. Actually I did what any pussy-ass chump would have done. I helped her up and asked if I could take her back to her room, with no intention of making any kind of move on her.

She said, "What floor are we on?"

I said, "Third."

"I think my room is on two. I can't really walk anymore. Where's your room?"

I said, "Right here."

As Heather went into my room I tried to get her friend up off the floor, but when I reached down and touched her arm she started yelling, "Get your fucking hands off me, asshole." Then she launched a halfhearted punch at my balls that kind of glanced off my thigh. I looked back to Heather to see if she was going to offer me some help in wrangling her friend, but she was already in my room, on my bed. Not wanting to risk another nut-shot, I just left her friend there, assuming she'd sober up and find her way back to her room.

I essentially could have done anything I wanted to Heather that night, but it didn't even cross my mind. I took off her shoes, went down the hall and ran some warm water over a washrag in the bathroom, came back, cleaned the blood off her forehead, put a Band-Aid on the cut, pulled up the covers, and—get this shit—I went to sleep on the fucking floor so she'd be more comfortable.

I remember Dave just pretending to go to sleep. At the time I really didn't know why, but after I found out about how Christian he was I thought it might have had something to do with breaking some rule against God or something by having a girl in our room. Who knows? He was a weird guy.

The next morning was awkward at best. Heather woke up before I did. She nudged me and then we introduced ourselves.

She said something like, "Hi. I'm Heather."

I said something like, "I'm Kyle."

"Did we . . . I hate having to actually ask this, but did we have sex last night?"


"Oh, I thought we . . . Are you sure?"

"Yeah. Positive. I think I would have remembered."

"I thought we were both drunk, though. I just want to make sure in case we didn't use any protection, you know, so I can get a morning-after pill."

This was our first official conversation and she was basically telling me that she was so slutty that standard operations for her involved being unable to remember having sex with a guy five hours after his dick was in her followed by eating morning-after pills like they were daily vitamins and this didn't even tip me off at all that this chick was bad fucking news.

The Lie
A Novel
. Copyright (c) by Chad Kultgen . Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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