BOOKBLOG: Frances Hardinge

The Lie Tree: Deliciously wicked, tantalising and original.


I’ve just finished The Lie Tree. My post SundayYAthon slump finally ended. I had read so many books in SundayYAthon madness that my brain was frazzled. Pair that with going back to work and needing all of the sleep I was struggling with any book but this book was magnificent. 

Billed as “Faith’s father has been found dead under mysterious circumstances, and as she is searching through his belongings for clues she discovers a strange tree. The tree only grows healthy and bears fruit if you whisper a lie to it. The fruit of the tree, when eaten, will deliver a hidden truth to the person who consumes it. The bigger the lie, the more people who believe it, the bigger the truth that is uncovered.

The girl realizes that she is good at lying and that the tree might hold the key to her father’s murder, so she begins to spread untruths far and wide across her small island community. But as her tales spiral out of control, she discovers that where lies seduce, truths shatter…”

I’ve had this on my TBR pile for a while and I wanted something a little bit different from what I normally read and it did not disappoint. It’s a deliciously wicked book and it keeps you hooked through the plot, the characters and the delectable writing style of the author.

Characters: You’re introduced to the Sunderly family. They seem so well put together. The father is a man of God. He has a wife. He has 2 children. They seem to be the perfect family. As you go through the book you realise that in fact that is not the way. It took me until the very last few pages to warm to Faith’s mam. She just seems to buttoned up. (I realise this was probably the norm of the time that the book was set, but she drove me a little bit crazy at times). Faith is one of those leading female characters that I like. She’s not afraid, she’s ballsy, she knows when is the right time to act or speak. She’s gutsy. I like her. Throughout the book you meet other characters who will drive you insane, or who are deceptively good. But they all work. And it’s incredible. 

Plot: I loved the premise of this book. A young girl trying to avenge her father’s death. There’s a strange plant that grows because of lies being believed. Oh yes. How deliciously wicked. What I loved most about the plot was that it never seemed stilted or it never ran out of steam. There were so many avenues that the story could’ve gone down and it never ran out of interest. I’ve never read something like this and that made my heart so happy. I didn’t see the ending the way it came. I loved that. Predictable books aren’t all that fun. 

Cover: I know you shouldn’t judge a book by the cover but I mean, c’mon, look at it. It looks like this dark, mysterious and twisted tale. And it turns out that that in fact is EXACTLY what the story is. The cover is so perfect for this story. The colour scheme… YESPLEASE. I love it. Black, green… DARKNESS. Thank you.

If you’ve got this on your TBR pile, then bump it up the pile. It’s devilishly wicked. I loved it. Absolutely would recommend. I’d quite like to see it made into a movie too. 

Have you read this? Would you recommend me anything similar? Let me know in the comments!

S x

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