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June 01 , 2009

Telling Only Lies


Novelist Anne Medlicott was happy to appear on a television programme about Nazi sympathisers in England before the Second World War. The other guests were an elderly professor of history and the well-known painter Perdita Whitchurch, both of whom Anne knew as a child. But when Anne blurts out a careless remark about Perditas aged father, she lands herself with a libel suit.
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On the run and under fire Providing medical relief in a war-torn region helps Alex Peters forget his past and focus on the job-delivering babies. Less easy to overlook is his blonde comrade-at-arms, who knows nothing of the trouble he's running from. Katie McCloud makes the assignment bearable, although her perky innocence proves to be an arousing…

Researching the facts she will use in her defence, she also gathers material for a book which will be a radical departure from the safe conventions of the mystery fiction she has written in the past. As Anne uncovers dramatic new information about people with whom her own life story seems to be inextricably connected, she also discovers the truth about herself.

The story switches from the Berlin of the 1936 Olympics and prewar Britain to present day London, Cornwall and Germany, and from family life to the world of high politics. Past crimes and lies are revealed, present day pretences are gradually exposed; and its never too late to identify a criminal - or a hero.

Anita Brookner saidTelling Only Lies is a novel notable for its adult perspective as well as its page turning tempo. (The Spectator)

The American Kirkus Review said, Mann - who, like Anne, is best known as the author of a well- received, dispassionate series of detective stories - re-creates herself brilliantly in this mystery/intrigue counterpart to Philip Roth's self-tormenting autobiographical fictions.
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