I think that I had a hard time getting around to reviewing this book because I couldn't decide whether the lie mentioned in the title was a lie of bravery or cowardice. I still don't know. And I don't think the pretty girl on the front cover, Evie, knows either.
The novel opens at the end of World War II. Evie's stepfather has just returned home from war, and the author describes the atmosphere of the U.S. as if she'd experienced this time in history personally. It's a time when everyone in the country was breathing a sigh of relief in unison with each other. Life as everyone knew it from before the war was finally back to normal. Or was it?
Not long after his return, Evie's stepfather insists that they take a vacation down to Florida despite the fact that the school year is starting up. As their car heads south, the dark foreshadowing begins. Something's not right about this trip. While in Florida, Evie falls in love with a mysterious stranger. Something's not right about his affections toward her either.
The story continues with a deep betrayal, a hurricane, missing people, a murder, and a trial. It's at this trial that Evie must tell her lie. It's a lie that marks the boundary between the innocence of a 15-year-old and the realization that pulls her abruptly from the innocence of childhood. But does she tell the lie to protect herself or the ones she loves?
This story is dark and the author lets you know it from the beginning. It's a book quickly read in a sitting or 2. The reason you turn the pages, though, is more because the story is well-written rather than because it's suspenseful. Note: While I critique both purchased and free books in the same way, I'm legally obligated to tell you I received this book free through the Amazon Vine program in return for my review. Blah blah blah.