book review: The Liar by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen | BookBrowse

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THE LIAR by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen
translated from the Hebrew by Sondra Silverston
★★★★☆
Little, Brown and Co., 2019

 

The Liar is a book that will make its readers uncomfortable by design; set in modern-day Israel, it follows a 17-year-old girl, Nofar, who is unremarkable in every way until one day she decides to tell a terrible lie, with far-reaching consequences. At her summer job at an ice cream parlor she has an unpleasant encounter with a local celebrity who yells at her and insults her appearance—things then escalate when Nofar falsely accuses him of attempted rape.

It’s a deeply unsettling premise, and a difficult one to pull off. How does an author tell a story about a false accusation without trivializing the reality of sexual assault? Ayelet Gundar-Goshen rises to the challenge.

You can read the rest of my review HERE on BookBrowse, and you can read a piece I wrote about the rarity of false sexual assault allegations HERE.


You can pick up a copy of The Liar (published as Liar in the UK) here on Book Depository.

15 thoughts on “book review: The Liar by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen | BookBrowse

  1. I’m really looking forward to picking this one up! It’s too bad the author takes it a step too far with a separate narrative thread, but the main premise just sounds too appealing to pass up. I’ll definitely be picking up a copy at some point! Great review, and your research piece is excellent as well!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great review! I can’t help but feel hesitant over a book with a premise like this because the idea of false allegations is too often thrown around when, in fact, they’re very rare (as your second article goes into detail about). I’m glad to hear Gundar-Goshen handles it well and it is a fascinating topic to explore.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I think the marketing team knew how unpalatable of a premise it was – most summaries I’ve read make no mention of a false sexual assault allegation, they just say ‘Nofar tells a terrible lie,’ even though this happens literally in the first chapter. But I wanted to be upfront in addressing it as it’s a premise that makes me deeply uncomfortable as well and I want people to know what they’re signing up for with this book. I was so surprised that Gundar-Goshen was able to carry this off with as much nuance and sensitivity as she did.

      Like

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