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Publisher's Summary

Listen to this thought-provoking, critically acclaimed novel from Frances Hardinge, winner of the Costa Book of the Year and Costa Children's Book Awards.

Faith Sunderly leads a double life. To most people, she is reliable, dull, trustworthy - a proper young lady who knows her place as inferior to men. But inside, Faith is full of questions and curiosity, and she cannot resist mysteries: an unattended envelope, an unlocked door. She knows secrets no one suspects her of knowing. She knows that her family moved to the close-knit island of Vane because her famous scientist father was fleeing a reputation-destroying scandal. And she knows, when her father is discovered dead shortly thereafter, that he was murdered.

In pursuit of justice and revenge, Faith hunts through her father's possessions and discovers a strange tree. The tree bears fruit only when she whispers a lie to it. The fruit of the tree, when eaten, delivers a hidden truth. The tree might hold the key to her father's murder - or it may lure the murderer directly to Faith herself. Frances Hardinge is the author of many acclaimed novels, including Cuckoo Song, which earned five starred reviews.

©2016 Frances Hardinge (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"As narrator, [Charlotte] Wright dazzles with her character portrayals and propels listeners through this gripping story." ( AudioFile magazine)

What listeners say about The Lie Tree

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Clever & Intriguing!

Very creative & original!! The kind of book that gets your imagination flowing. Great read & listening.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Terrible narrator and Boring philosophical rambling

The reader: One of the worst readers ever, her voices do not change for characters and her accent sounds like an American trying to fake what they think a British accent sounds like with the atrocious way she emphasizes every single syllable of a word to stress a British accent.

The Story:
There's really not much story to begin with, the plot is really minimally developed: Clever Heroine (Faith) paired with rival-attraction boy set out to solve the mystery of her father's (The Reverend) death. Both are piled into a plot of supposed mystery and intrigue as they are faced with the gutter snipes and wealthy classes.

The murderer's backstory and
motivation for why they unreserved faith's father was a little interesting, but the story so overladen with droll metaphors and philosophical musings that by the story's climax you feel less surprised and just flatly like: oh I guess that works, type of feeling.

The characters:
Faith is probably the most frustrating of all bc she is a whiny sneaky little smart Alec that I really couldn't find any connection with her as a reader. She's more than a little self-conceited (always thinking she is more cleverer than 99.9% of most of the characters she is forced to interact with *with the exception of her father that I just couldn't like her.

The rest of the characters seem to fall flat, despite all their backstories or idiosyncrasies described in the book and seem more as simple background or prop pieces that are forcibly forced into the story who's sole existences are only a means to inject some progress into propelling the story onwards at its snail pace.

With that being said I returned this book, and recommend a "Face like Glass" instead

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A book of truth and determination!

Would you listen to The Lie Tree again? Why?

Yes- thought a bit slow at times, it was a wonderful story.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Lie Tree?

The amazing growth of the tree with each lie, though no one believed!

What does Charlotte Wright bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Honestly, she was a nice narrator, but nothing that would have changed the experience.

Any additional comments?

Isn't this photo something to gawk at? I totally love it - and it's just one version of this book's cover. The photo belongs to a book called, The Lie Tree, by Frances Hardinge. I can't get over the sketching; it's mysterious, curious and almost evil, but does it match the actual story..,
(This photos was found via Google.com. I only added the title.)

The story tells of Faith, the eldest daughter, who discovered her father's work has been scrutinized and found scandalous. He'd been accused of an intellectual fabrication so great, the family fled into the night from Kent, to an island called Vane, But that desperate run served no assistance, because later her father is discovered dead, assumed to have committed the ultimate sin: suidide. Faith refuses to believe so and she set herself on a mission to clear her father's name and uncover a killer.

What I've come to decide is, this book shouldn't have been titled The Lie Tree, but Faith Determined! It was all about how she could put things to right. Dead right! It didn't matter who fell upon her plan either. The Lie Tree allowed her to assumably feed the mysterious three a lie, in order to receive a truth...

*For the full book review: http://tinyurl.com/hr35sm5
**Book is from my personal library, for an honest review.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not bad, but much too dark.

Don't read this if you are easily depressed. It is dark, so give yourself ample time in between readings if you can.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Wonderful Book!

The only thing I did not like was sometimes in the story it started dragging onward and felt boring. But, as I did enjoy this story, I will read (or listen to) The Lie Tree once more to appreciate the book’s details. The reader did an excellent job using her voice in different tones in different places of the book and changing the sound of her voice if she changed to different characters and/or needed a different tone for emotion. I would highly recommend! Thank you for the excellent reading experience!

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

An unexpected great read

The book was honestly really good. It did have a slow start but after a while it became very interesting and leaving you wanting to know more. It was a really great murder mystery.I recommend it to anyone who likes to read about mysteries, scandals, and a little touch of magic.

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    5 out of 5 stars

What a fantastic story! And great reader!

This Victorian fantasy/Mystery kept me thoroughly engrossed . The prose is gorgeous, the plot fantastic, and the setting vividly imagined and described. I would recommend it to any teen or adult with the patience to let the plot unfold gradually, while the characters grow and change. Caveat: there are disturbing elements, and some violence, but nothing too graphic.

Kudos to the narrator, who does a beautiful job! I will look for more books she reads.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Interesting Setting but Uninteresting Reveal

Overall I enjoyed this book. It takes place in a period that fantasy usually doesn't. I was intrigued by the idea of the plant and was pulled along through the story wanting to know how it would all come out. The setting of archaeological digs was interesting and the author mixes in social norms of the period. There's a lot of focus on women's lack of power during this period, which seemed well-researched to me. I also liked the idea, at the end of what the tree really is.

That said, I was very disappointed that the author didn't actually follow through on what the book initially said the tree was. The book very much implies that the tree imparts knowledge that no one else would know. But the visions that she sees only have to do with her father's murder. It just doesn't make sense that the tree would be that sought -after if it wasn't really special knowledge.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great Gothic Victorian!

I really enjoyed this. I write Gothic Victorian historical fiction and it's not easy to find great books in the genre that aren't cliche or romance-centric. It did not feel like I was reading young adult so it wasn't pandering. I particularly enjoyed the author's word choices, visuals, and metaphors/similes. I'm definitely going to try another one of her books next.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Magical Book

The audiobook really brought the story to life. The narrator read so clearly and differentiated between the character voices in a way that helped me visualize the piece altogether. I enjoyed the audio slightly more than the story itself, but it was time well-spent listening! Highly recommend!

1 person found this helpful