Published: March 16th, 2023
Publisher: Bantam Press
Genre: Mystery, Suspense, Thriller, Crime Fiction, Episoltary Novel
Format: Hardcover, Kindle, Audiobook
Today is my stop on the blog tour for the darkly voyeuristic The Ugly Truth. Thank you to Anne at Random Things Tours for the invitation to take part, and Bantam press for the proof copy of the book.
‘A whip-smart and ingenious thriller that homes in on our toxic addiction to celebrity’ Lesley Kara, bestselling author of THE RUMOUR
Melanie Lange has disappeared.
Her father, Sir Peter Lange, says she is a danger to herself and has been admitted to a private mental health clinic.
Her ex-husband, Finn, and best friend, Nell, say she has been kidnapped.
The media will say whichever gets them the most views.
But whose side are you on?
Told via interviews, transcripts and diary entries, The Ugly Truth is a shocking and addictive thriller about fame, power and the truth behind the headlines.
‘#FreeBritney meets The Appeal in this addictively unique thriller. Get ready to be utterly hooked’ Jack Jordan, author of Do No Harm
“My father is keeping me prisoner. I don’t think I’ll ever be free again. ”
Melanie Lange has not been seen in public since the day before her 33rd birthday. The next day, the influencer, businesswoman and former modeposted a video to her YouTube channel saying she was taking a break from public life. She hasn’t been seen since.
Six months later videos surface of Melanie claiming she’s being kept prisoner by her father and begging for help. They spark an online movement to save her. But while many believe her claims, there are just as many others who believe her father, business tycoon Sir Peter Lange, who says she’s safe in a private mental health clinic.
It’s time to find out which team you are on.
#SaveMelanie or #HelpPeter
Addictive, unique and darkly voyeuristic, The Ugly Truth is a topical thriller exploring the toxic side of celebrity and social media. Soaked in salacious gossip, sensational headlines, it keeps you guessing right up until its metaphoric punch-to-the-gut finale. So buckle up and hold on tight, because you’re in for one hell of a ride!
I’d heard a lot of great things about L.C. North’s books, but this was my first time reading one. Now I’m wondering what took me so long?! Fast-paced, skillfully written and scalpel sharp, this character-laden epistolary novel had me hooked from start to finish. North perfectly portrays the poisoned chalice of modern celebrity in this thought-provoking thriller; exploring our growing obsession with every facet of celebrities’ lives, our harsh judgement of their every move, and the toll of media harassment. She also explores topics such as trauma, grief, anxiety and depression, examining the toll the pressure of the spotlight puts on those illuminated by it. It really makes you wonder if the price of fame and fortune is too high. It feels part #FreeBritney and part ‘I Am Paris’, adding to the authentic and familiar vibe you get as you’re reading.
The story is told from multiple points of view, seamlessly moving between the different voices, formats and timelines. This immerses you in the story and creates an atmosphere that makes the reader feel like you are part of the action, rather than just reading a book. The multiple narrators also help to add confusion about who is telling the truth, who you can trust, who the good guys are, and who are the villains. I found my thoughts on this vacillated throughout the book and I really enjoyed the tension this extra uncertainty brought to the story. The characters are all messy as hell, unsympathetic and not that likeable, but fun and compelling to read. And while Melanie is the centre of the storyline, she feels quite enigmatic, being seen mostly through the eyes of the other characters. There is no denying her glamour and allure, but she feels ‘other’, lost, and out of reach. Though I was desperate to know the truth of what had happened to her, I only found myself connecting and relating with her as she became more human than ‘celebrity’. I think there’s a lesson in that…
Jaw-dropping, original and totally bingeable, this cautionary tale is a must for every thriller lover’s TBR.
MEET THE AUTHOR:
L.C. North studied psychology at university before pursuing a career in Public Relations. Her first book club thriller – The Ugly Truth – combines her love of psychology and her fascination with the celebrities in the public eye. L.C. North is currently working on her second novel, and when she’s not writing, she co-hosts the crime thriller podcast, In Suspense. L.C. North lives on the Suffolk borders with her family. L.C. North is the pen name of Lauren North.
BUY THE BOOK:
Waterstones | Amazon | Bookshop.org
Thanks for reading Bibliophiles xxx
Please check out the reviews from the other bloggers taking part in the tour
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