Lie Like a Magpie

A review of Lie Like a Magpie by Lily Anna

One of the great thrills of being a reader is finding a little gem of a book hidden away off the beaten track. It’s like discovering a beauty spot that no one knows about or a new track from an unknown band. It’s rich and rewarding and satisfying. Sometimes you’re tempted to keep it to yourself, so as not to make it popular or spoil the experience. However when it comes to books or music, you really have to share to give the creative producer the credit they deserve.

Movellas, for those who don’t know is a site, much like Wattpad, where writers can publish their work for others to read and get valuable creative criticism. Unlike Wattpad, it’s mainly made up with young writers taking those first tentative steps into the world of writing. There’s the usual mix of fan fiction and a surprisingly good amount of original fiction. It’s great joy is that, like Charles Dickens, you release the book in episodic format so you can try ideas out on an audience.  I’ve been a contributor for over five years now and have benefited greatly from the encouragement and feedback I have received. I’m now, I hope, a better writer than I was before. It has also been really nice to see other writers develop their own styles and become really good writers. Most want to go on and become authors with plans for publishing. Myself, I just like putting something down and exciting my own imagination, although it’s always encouraging to see people like your work and acknowledge it.

So I come to the latest full story I have read on Movellas. Lie Like a Magpie by Lilly Anna. I believe I’m correct in saying that it’s the second full length novel that she has created. It’s a thriller that keeps you gripped from the first chapter. Told with a very chatty dialogue style that makes the words flow very successfully, it reads like a film. I can picture the character in ‘Mission Impossible’ mode. The heart starts racing as you progress wondering if she’ll succeed in her endeavours.

I read the first chapter online along with a couple more. However I used the useful download as e-book to read on a book reader. The other night I read though the rest in one go, not wanting the experience to end. it sucked me in and kept flowing right to the end. Told mainly through dialogue, the story alternates between two times in the lives of the two main protagonists, Josh and Maggie. Using a story that hops back and forth can be sometimes off-putting for the reader, and difficult to achieve. However Lily Anna manages to keep it all together and the changes don’t play too much with the mind of the reader.

It’s a story about having to pretend you’re someone different for your entire life. It’s must be hard to live your entire existence to the world as someone you’re not. The book manages to create a view of what that might be like. It keeps you reading to the end. Is Josh bad? Is Maggie going to buckle under the pressure? Just some of the questions that keeps you wanting to get to the end to find out the answers. The tensions build until the final dramatic chapter. Without giving too much away I’m glad the author finished as she did. it would have been very easy to have gone another way, which might have failed to live up to the rest of the story.

All in all this is a wonderful story. It’s a first draft, so a little ragged around some edges. A little more description at times might have helped, but then again may have spoilt the tension. I hope you take time to read this story, its’ well worth the time and if you need another reason, then it’s free 🙂

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Shaun Nightshade

Writer, designer, blogger, dreamer

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