Title: Truth or Lie
Author: Lynn Lorenz
Publisher: Hartwood Publishing
Buy link: Amazon.com (Second Edition)
Genre: Contemporary Paranormal-lite
Length: Novella (125 pages/approx. 30k words)
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
A Guest Review by Aunt Lynn
Review Summary: It hit all my “meh” buttons.
Travis Conners is a firefighter who barely made it through high school. Why would Anthony Pappas, an adorable second grade teacher, be interested in him? Travis is willing to find out, if Anthony will give him a chance.
Being descended from a goddess, Anthony Pappas possesses a unique gift—he can tell when people are lying. Sounds good, until your boyfriends all end up lying to you. Anthony’s tired of it. It’s easier not to get involved than to have your heart broken time and time again.
When a little redheaded boy brings the men together, these two heroes will have to find the courage to take a leap of faith and follow their hearts…
Edward, Unconditionally by this author is one of my comfort reads (plus every time I see an English Bulldog, I think of Winston – woof!), so I didn’t hesitate to pick up this one, another title that features a protag with a paranormal gift. Unfortunately, because of several issues, I didn’t enjoy Truth or Lie nearly as much.
This is one of those books that simply didn’t do a whole lot for me. It was sweet and pleasant enough overall and there isn’t anything terribly wrong with it, just nothing great, nothing special to set it apart from other releases. It also had the bad fortune to have been sandwiched between two truly outstanding reads that further highlighted the meh-ness of this book.
It’s competently written, the characters – two nice guys as our heroes, a cute kid, understanding family and coworkers, a woman who isn’t what she appears (in a good way) – fleshed enough to get a feel for them, the story has a beginning, middle, end, it’s paced okay. We get some conflict, but not anything overwhelming, and topics such as lying, learning disabilities, gossiping, the changing family unit and the loss of a parent are incorporated.The scene with Travis at school talking about Rusty’s father had me choking up a bit, even on the second read. Even though there is insta-attraction, I liked how they talked about it. All fine, just not fabulous, nothing to make me think about it after I put it aside.
And…there were several things that annoyed me.
First, Travis has a habit of calling Anthony “teach” and after the first few times, it began to grate on me, especially when he said it during their smexxin. In fact, I clenched my teeth every time it was on page after the first ten of the twenty-five times it appears.
Second, while I liked that the author assigned self-confidence issues to her protags, giving them some depth, they both brought these feelings up to themselves and to each other quite often and it wore on me.
Last, I felt that the paranormal element was very weak, making me wonder why it was even incorporated. The story could have stood on its own without it.
While it is an okay read, it will be ultimately forgettable as these isn’t anything here setting it apart from the many other middle-of-the-road releases out there.