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  • Writer's pictureHannah Brennan

All Her Little Lies - Becca Day

Published by Embla Books, Wednesday 26th October 2022

Becca Day's second novel All Her Little Lies packs plenty of twists. Any fans of a classic domestic thriller with a mother at the centre will love this confident second outing from Day.

It's the age old question: what would you do if your child committed a murder?

Alex Forrester finds herself in exactly that position at the start of All Her Little Lies, when she discovers the body of her son's girlfriend - the daughter of her oldest childhood friend.

Her snap decision to hide the body and clean up the crime scene sets the wheels in motion, and Day's novel quickly gathers pace, as Alex struggles to cope with her own guilt, the desire to protect her son and her growing suspicions about everyone around her.

Getting started

The opening of this book had me hooked. I especially loved the rural setting. On the one hand, there is a sense of isolation, as the farms and houses are so far apart - but it's contrasted with the fact that in a small town, everyone knows everyone. Or at least, they think they do.

Day wastes no time in setting us up for the drama - the first chapter's subtitle tells us it's "the day of the murder". These touches keep the tension high, but also mean the story is easy to follow and you waste no time orientating yourself in the story.

Quite a character

Alex is a great lead character - the perfect blend of frazzled, unpredictable lead battling a thousand emotions at once.

Day handles multiple point-of-view characters confidently, with enough viewpoints that we're constantly seeing the crime from different angles, but not so many that it becomes confusing or frustrating.

The book also has a police-procedural angle to it, with the character of Stefani. Day explores the interesting idea of how police in a small town deal with a crime, when they know the families and suspects involved. It's nice to see an author really exploring the private live of their detective character - and in the end I wanted Stefani to solve the crime for the sake of her career, as much as I wanted justice for Hannah, the victim. (Side note - always slightly disturbing when the dead character has your name!)

In the end

I did enjoy the ending of All Their Little Lies - but blimey, there's a lot that goes on! There are a lot of plot lines to wrap up, but the complex ending is well handled.

There was one major plot twist that I saw coming from very early on. It didn't spoil the book for me, and there were other twists I didn't clock - but at times the red herring on that particular story line felt a little heavy handed.

What I did love about the ending was the agency the characters had in solving it - everyone who needs to be there is there, the tension is at fever pitch, the stakes are high.

Would definitely recommend

I thoroughly enjoyed All Their Little Lies, and devoured it in two settings. Embla Books is an exciting new venture for Bonnier, and if they continue to publish novels like this, I can only predict they'll do very well.

Overall, I think Day has created a cast of believable, fragile characters and placed them in an impossible situation. It's thriller-writing-101, and she doesn't miss.

Give me a shout on Instagram if you read it and let me know what you think!

  • Find it on Amazon here

I was given a free advanced-reader copy of this book, in exchange for a review.

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