Title: The Comfort of Lies
Author: Randy Susan Meyers
Release Date: February 12, 2013
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Rating: 4 out of 5
Five years ago, Tia had an affair with a married man, Nathan. Though he was always honest with her about the fact that he’d never leave his wife, Juliette, Tia had her fantasies. But reality came crashing down when Tia discovered she was pregnant; after telling her to “take care of it”, Nathan left her life for good. Alone, Tia decided to give her daughter up for adoption, to someone who could care for her better than Tia could. Now, five years later, Tia hasn’t been able to move on with her life. On an impulse, she sends Nathan a letter including the picture of their daughter that her adoptive parents sent Tia. When Juliette intercepts it, all her fears about the past few years seem to be confirmed.
The Comfort of Lies is about three very different women who are brought together by one little girl: Tia, Juliette, and Caroline, Tia’s daughter’s adoptive mother. Each of these women leaps off the page; Meyers makes sure that the reader feels their emotions vividly. Even when they make decisions that the reader doesn’t agree with (such as Juliette’s obsession with her husband’s illegitimate daughter), the reader can still understand their motives and why they’re acting the way they are. Meyers gets into each of these women’s head; they’re incredible drawn and realistically flawed.
Sometimes these women can be difficult in The Comfort of Lies; it’s not easy to sympathize with Caroline’s resentment of her daughter, nor is it easy to stomach Tia’s new found maternal instinct. At times, these women act selfishly, refusing to take account of how their actions affect others. But in the end, their lives are intertwined and it’s interesting to see how they do come together.
There are times that The Comfort of Lies is predictable, but the twists and turns of the plot aren’t the main reason to read this book. At its core, it’s a character-driven novel, and it’s the characters that make you want to keep turning the pages. Indeed, Meyers paces her novel excellently, and even if you’re pretty sure you know what’s coming, you’ll want to keep moving forward through this novel. It’s an easy, but thought-provoking, read.
If you want to lose yourself in someone else’s life, then The Comfort of Lies is a great choice. It’s a quick read, but one that will leave you thinking about the characters long after the last pages are turned. If your book club enjoys fiction about women, this would make an ideal pick as the multiple characters, their flaws, and the difficult choices they make would make excellent fodder for discussion.