When air force captain Luke Trussell opens his door one Sunday morning, he's shocked to find the police - and even more shocked when they charge him with rape. He knows he made a mistake in judgment the night before, but he certainly didn't force his attentions on the woman who's been stalking him for months.Problem is...Kalyna Harter has the bruises - and the DNA evidence - to make her claim convincing.Determined to isolate Luke, Kalyna goes to victims' rights advocate Ava Bixby of The Last Stand, hoping Ava will help put Luke behind bars. But Ava soon realizes she's defending the wrong victim.Problem is...switching her support to Luke could be dangerous - especially when she falls for him. Because Kalyna won't tolerate losing the man she wants to anyone. Least of all Ava.More
Narrator Allyson Johnson's performance of Brenda Novak's new Last Stand story, The Perfect Liar, is so smart and unsettling that listeners will find themselves thinking about it weeks after they've switched off their iPods. With the freshness of Michael C. Hall's iconic serial killer, Dexter Morgan, Johnson captures villain Kalyna Harter with a gutsy emotional connection that that packs a terrifying punch. Avoiding every psychopath-lurking-in-the-shadows cliché, this villain rises above the whispering, gravelly-voiced stalkers and shrill screaming-for-revenge lunatics to become one of the scariest monsters in romantic suspense to date.
Kalyna is the new poster girl (step aside Glenn Close) for why guys shouldn't indulge in one-night-stands. Pretty, smart, and sexy, she goes after what she wants in this case it's Air Force Captain Luke Trussell. She's carefully crafted a bullet proof mask to conceal what's inside: a psychopathic liar of consummate skill who's damaged inner landscape doesn't have room for anything resembling a conscience. And the consequences of one grief and booze-fueled mistake for Luke go from bad to lethal in a steady, terrifying spiral.
When Luke starts a fledgling relationship with crisis counselor Ava, Kalyna's narcissistic fixations turn deadly. The cat-and-mouse game she plays with them has a series of shocking plot twists and revelations that will make even seasoned suspense readers jump.
The bar for creepy killers has been set pretty high by writers like Dexter creator Jeff Lindsay and the team behind TV villain Ben Linus from Lost. Brenda Novak understands what it takes to create a character who wreaks havoc with an innocent smile and a completely convincing "who me?" blink of the eyes. And Johnson's inspired narration puts us inside Kalyna's manipulative and darkly methodical world on a journey into murders past and present. She gives Kalyna's public face a part perky cheerleader, part wounded bird femininity, then winds it down to a fiercely focused and disturbingly poised psychopath when she can't get what she wants. Even in the end, she gives Kalyna's lies and manipulations such a cool and convincing artlessness that it raises the hair on the back of your neck.
The Perfect Liar is a reminder that we don't need vampires to scare ourselves silly, human villains like this are more terrifying than any fanged creatures of the night. If you aren't already a fan, this book will definitely turn you on to a great new author, particularly Novak's Last Stand series. Nancy Carter
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The Perfect Liar
- SA Shay
It's up there with the rest of the thriller mysteries I listen to
The Boston accent
I really didn't like that DD was injured. That storyline just wasn't believable.