Dell, March 2004, 22.95, 304 pp.
They met when they were both racing their expensive sports cars out on the open road, a ride that ended in them making love in an abandoned barn. When he left she didn't know his name but he got in touch with her a few weeks later and they started dating. Lenny Maxted was a famous comic who teamed up with Jack Flowers and their act was in demand by an adoring public but Alice loved all of him though Lenny was drowning in drugs and depression.
He committed suicide leaving a note for Alice but his death devastated her and she married another man while mourning. That marriage only lasted for three years before she divorced him and moved into the home that Lenny bought for her. Time and her animals healed many of her wounds but they were opened up again when she got a news clipping in the mail about a body found in a nearby lake. Alice immediately thinks of Kitty who disappeared after she and Lenny reconciled. A few days later Jack shows up and Alice is plunged into a nightmare that she might never recover from.
Laura Wilson has written a dark gritty noir novel that is all too believable. Neither Alice nor Jack is particularly admirable characters but aside from sex and drugs, Alice never crosses the line into criminal activity. Although Lenny is dead when the book opens his presence is felt throughout the novel, a week pathetic person who depended on drugs to help him through life's dark spots. TELLING LIES TO ALICE is a fast work of psychological suspense in the tradition of Alfred Hitchcock.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner