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The King of Lies | [John Hart]

The King of Lies

John Hart creates a literary thriller that is as suspenseful as it is poignant, a riveting murder mystery layered beneath the southern drawl of a humble North Carolina lawyer. When Work Pickens finds his father murdered, the investigation pushes a repressed family history to the surface and he sees his own carefully constructed facade begin to crack.
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Publisher's Summary

John Hart creates a literary thriller that is as suspenseful as it is poignant, a riveting murder mystery layered beneath the southern drawl of a humble North Carolina lawyer. When Work Pickens finds his father murdered, the investigation pushes a repressed family history to the surface and he sees his own carefully constructed facade begin to crack.

Work's troubled sister, her combative girlfriend, his gold digging socialite wife, and an unrequited lifelong love join a cast of small town characters that create no shortage of drama in this extraordinary, fast-paced suspense novel.

Hart's mastery of prose and plot belie his newcomer status as he explores the true heart of a man. An illuminating anatomy of a murder and the ripple effect it produces within a family and a community, The King of Lies is a stunning debut.

©2006 John Hart; (P)2006 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

  • Mystery Writers of America 2007 Edgar Nominee, Best First Novel by an American Author

"[A] stunning debut, an exceptionally deep and complex mystery thriller....Few readers will be able to resist." (Publishers Weekly)
"This is a first novel that lunges off the page, just grabs the reader by the throat and won't let go....Hart is a fine stylist, turning phrases with a panache that recalls Raymond Chandler." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (726 )
5 star
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4.0 (270 )
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Story
4.0 (275 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Rogene Grove, OK USA 07-24-06
    Rogene Grove, OK USA 07-24-06 Member Since 2009
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    38
    2
    Overall
    "Very good!"

    Did not expect the "who done it" and was kept guessing until the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    james harris cincnnati 07-23-06
    james harris cincnnati 07-23-06 Member Since 2007
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "No, its not what you think"

    This book is dreadful, I'm unsure if it is the writer, most likely, or the narrator but it reads like freshman fiction at an open enrollment liberal arts college in the midwest. After 30 minutes I had an unpleasant physiological reaction - good thing I wasn't driving. If you're looking for Grisham or really want to kill 10 hours I recommend Don Delillo or Michael Connelley. Don't say I didn't warn you

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Randolph Reid 07-23-06 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    "More like Conroy"

    I believe the book is more about a troubled family than a legal thriller. It reminds me of the Prince of Tides, a Southern family with hidden issues that continually influence their lives. I thought the narrator fit the main character and did a good job. I hated for the book to end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cathy Huntsville, TX, United States 07-23-06
    Cathy Huntsville, TX, United States 07-23-06 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    142
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    205
    19
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    2
    Overall
    "Hard to stop listening"

    I don't know what some people were listening to when they said this book was boring. It was a great listen. There was a lot of action, well developed characters and a number of twists. I found myself listening to this in two days and wanting more. If you want to lose yourself in a good story, this is the book for you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amy Fort Worth, TX, USA 07-22-06
    Amy Fort Worth, TX, USA 07-22-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    REVIEWS
    3
    3
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    0
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    "Worth buying!"

    This book ranks in the top three in books I've bought at Audible. I work a 10 hour shift desk job, So I listen to at least three books a month.It held my attention until the very end! I would have giving it five stars except the ending is a bit over the top. Still worth buying and listening to though!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandra L. Personette SF Bay Area 07-21-06
    Sandra L. Personette SF Bay Area 07-21-06 Member Since 2008

    Sandylp

    HELPFUL VOTES
    219
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    REVIEWS
    83
    36
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    4
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    Overall
    "Water, please!!"

    I found the story interesting, but the narrator's voice was annoying. He sounds as if his tongue is dry and he desperately needs a drink of water. Instead of following the story, I found myself listening for the next swallow. The book is well-written, though, and I don't regret spending over 12 hours listening to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kamran Harrison, NY, United States 07-06-06
    Kamran Harrison, NY, United States 07-06-06 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    202
    7
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    0
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    "A good listen"

    This is a well-crafted story with subtle twists. Not too predictable, and quite fun and easy to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leslie Laguna Beach, CA, USA 06-18-06
    Leslie Laguna Beach, CA, USA 06-18-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
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    137
    4
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    0
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    Overall
    "Well-crafted novel"

    This writer is definitely gifted at defining characters at a visceral level. I detested most of the protagonists; found the story and mystery compelling and listened almost nonstop to the end. Some of the descriptions of the emotional dialogue between the hero and his mistress were a littly trying but this ia small complaint. I recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Spurgeon Martinsville, VA, USA 04-21-08
    Spurgeon Martinsville, VA, USA 04-21-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    31
    2
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    0
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    Overall
    "Narrator"

    You need not let this Man do another narrating. He is the most boring reader I have ever listened to! All the other books I have listened to have been wonderful. But this Man needs a lesson on how to captivate a listener!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tom Campion 04-22-07
    Tom Campion 04-22-07 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
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    0
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    Overall
    "king of lies"

    Dull, depressing, uninteresting. Stopped reading it after an hour.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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