Blog Tour: The Truth About Lies by Tracy Darnton – Review

Synopsis from Goodreads

Jess has an incredible memory. She can remember every single detail of every single day since she was eleven. But Jess would rather not be remarkable and, after years of testing at the hands of a ruthless research team, she has finally managed to escape.

Just when Jess thinks that she’s managing to settle in to living a normal life, everything changes. Her boarding-school roommate dies and the school is thrown into a state of chaos and grief. Then new boy Dan appears and Jess can’t help but find herself drawn to him. But building relationships is hard when you can’t reveal who you really are and Jess is getting hints that someone knows more about her than she would like.

Is it time to run again? Will she ever be truly free?

Perfect for fans of E. Lockhart, Eve Ainsworth and Sophie McKenzie.


One of my favourite things about The Truth About Lies by Tracy Darnton is Jess, the main character. She isn’t your typical likeable character to start with but the more you get into her head and understand how her brain works you start to warm up to her. I do tend to love an unlikable character, one that comes with many flaws and hidden secrets.

The book is extremely well written and I love that each chapter starts with a quote on the subject of Memory. Not only you are reading an awesome story, but you are also learning a few things about Jess’s condition.

I’m not gonna lie, when I was younger I wished I had photographic memory so I could be one of those people who could recite entire books to others, like I had a super skill. 

As any good thriller, straight from the beginning of the book, you start asking too many questions, who is Jess hiding from? What really happened to her roommate? Who is sending Jess creepy notes? Is Dan really interested in her? Is the new teacher actually a teacher? Is Jess’s memory actually that reliable? Has anyone been in my room and moved things around? Is someone following me? Is my boyfriend really my boyfriend? 

Just like Jess I was getting too suspicious of everything and everyone. However, Jess has her reasons for it. The more you get into the story, the more you get to understand why Jess is how she is, and why she is so suspicious of everything. I like how we get so deep in her mind and her feelings that even I was suspicious of every new character and start to read in between the lines maybe a bit too much.

I do love a good thriller and The Truth About Lies really kept me on my toes until the end. If you like thrillers, with a dash of romance and a good dose of mystery this book is definitely for you. Just be aware that this book can also leave you a bit paranoid and suspicious of everything and everyone.

Rating: ★★★★☆

The Truth About Lies by Tracy Darnton will be out in paperback on the 12th of July and is available for pre-order on Amazon(affiliated link).

Thanks Stripes for sending me an ARC of The Truth About Lies in exchange for my honest review.

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

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Blog Tour: The Truth About Lies by Tracy Darnton – Author Post


The Joy of Book Journals

“It’s got an orange cover and it’s by Richard Someone or maybe Roberta.” In the ten minutes it takes me to wander down to Mr’s B’s Emporium for a book I’ve just seen reviewed somewhere, I’ve often forgotten the title and author. And, like most people, I’d struggle to recall more than the general gist of a book a month after finishing it, or to quote an actual sentence. Our memories just don’t work in that way.

So I have a little book. A book journal. Not that exciting on the outside, but the inside is stuffed full of notes and cuttings and the occasional cartoon. I write brief notes on most of the books I read. I started when I was doing an MA in Writing for Young People at Bath Spa University as I had to cite them in essays. If an author used a technique I might want to explore like multiple narratives or a diary format, this was all duly noted ready to use for reference.

I’ve carried on with the journal because it helps with my own writing. What makes me love this character or find the dialogue convincing? Am I ever bored and skipping sections or is the author making me stay up late to keep on to the end? I’m reading as a writer looking at the craft of the author. And I don’t want to waste that process – so I need an aide-memoire.

I’ve never shown anyone before but here’s a sneaky peak inside my book journals and a flavour of the random notes I’ve made:

I loved Sally Gardner’s Maggot Moon and copied out the dedication: “For you the dreamers. Overlooked at school. Never won prizes. You who will own tomorrow.” I was genuinely creeped out by Alex Bell’s Frozen Charlotte and for Lisa Williamson’s The Art of Being Normal I’ve underlined a cryptic “good on desire”. In Peter Bunzl’s Cogheart I admired the way the book resolved to give satisfaction but left threads for the next book.

The line which really tickled me in David Solomon’s My Brother is a Superhero was: “I don’t know what it was but something about the situation made people want to cook meat slowly in large pots.” That still makes me laugh. From Rachel Ward’s Numbers I’d picked out a well-done sex scene on page 135, which I seem to remember involved hay and a barn, and in David Almond’s A Song for Ella Grey I wished I’d written the prose on pages 51 and 275.

These notes are all very personal to me and my experience of the books. As I flick through, I’m transported back into those stories and how I felt about them. And reviewing the notes gives a better chance of the information making it into long-term memory.

So I’d strongly recommend keeping a book journal if you want to be a writer. Make your own peculiar comments and build up a bespoke “How to write” handbook full of the bits which interest you. Plus, it’s a good reason if you needed one to buy more stationery.

Oh, and those clever bookseller types at Mr B’s who like a challenge found the book I was after. The orange book written by Richard/Roberta turned out to be Mr Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan. And the cover is blue.

Written by Tracy Darnton

Tracy author pic.jpgTracy Darnton’s The Truth About Lies will be published by Stripes on July 12th 2018. Now she’s written a thriller on memory, she hopes to be much better at remembering.

Follow Tracy on Twitter @TracyDarnton