By Laura Elliot
Published by Bookouture (13 February 2015)
His name is Michael Carmody. He is a writer and a father. His son is lying in a coma, fighting for his life.
Her name is Lorraine Cheevers. She is an artist and mother. An illicit affair has destroyed her marriage.
Michael is desperate to find the couple who left his son for dead, a victim of a hit and run.
Lorraine is desperate to start a new life for her and her daughter.
Michael and Lorraine are about to cross paths - damaged souls, drawn to one another.
They don't know that their lives are already connected.
They don't know the web of lies surrounding them.
They are each searching for the truth. But when they find it, it could destroy them both.
Fragile Lies is a complex story of relationships, betrayal and deception with tragic consequences.
The book begins with an illicit liaison that ends in a hit and run accident. We are then introduced to Lorraine, who is setting up a new life with her daughter, following the breakdown of her marriage. And also to Michael, who is the father of the hit and run victim and is determined to discover who did this to his child.
Fragile Lies didn't grab my attention straight away. I found the flashbacks and switching between characters to be disjointed, and I was confused in places. The chapters from the viewpoint of Killian, the hit-and-run victim, were too short and didn't really add anything to the story early on. Later, they became more significant and more relevant to the story.
Laura Elliot has created two totally unlikeable characters in Virginia and Adrian, which I assume was her intention. Virginia is a nasty piece of work - prepared to step on anyone, including her husband and best friend. Adrian is weak and totally besotted with Virginia, to the detriment of his marriage and relationship with his daughter. Lorraine and Michael's characters seemed a little flat and I found it hard to sympathise with either of them until the second half of the book.
I am pleased that I persisted, however, as the pace picked up at around 43%. From this moment, the plot flowed more smoothly and it became obvious where the story was heading. I assume that the author intended for the readers to figure everything out at around this stage.
Overall, I give Fragile Lies a 3.5 star rating. With more careful editing, I would give it 4 stars, but it doesn't quite reach that for me.
I received an Advanced Reader Copy from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.