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Review: Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil by Melina Marchetta

Blurb from Goodreads:
Bashir “Bish” Ortley is a London desk cop. Almost over it. Still not dealing with the death of his son years ago, as well as the break-up of his marriage. 

Across the channel, a summer bus tour, carrying a group of English teenagers is subject to a deadly bomb attack, killing four of the passengers and injuring a handful of others. Bish’s daughter is one of those on board. 

The suspect is 17 year old Violette LeBrac whose grandfather was responsible for a bombing that claimed the lives of dozens of people fourteen years ago; and whose mother, Noor, has been serving a life sentence for the part she was supposed to have played in the attack.

As Bish is dragged into the search for the missing Violette, he finds himself reluctantly working with Noor LeBrac and her younger brother, Jimmy Sarraf.

And the more he delves into the lives of the family he helped put away, the more Bish realizes that they may have got it wrong all those years ago, and that truth wears many colours. Especially when it comes to the teenagers on board the recent bus bombing. Including his daughter. 

Tell the truth. Shame the devil. Bish can’t get Violette LeBrac’s words out of his head. But what he may get is some sort of peace with his own past as the worlds of those involved in two bombings, years apart, collide into the journey of his life. 
My Review:
Bish is the type of character that you can immediately sink your teeth into -- real, good, striving to be better and, most of all, intent and focused on finding the truth. We are thrown into his reality immediately upon finding out that his daughter was on board a bus in France blown up by a bomb. We struggle with him throughout this book and its many complexities and this is what Marchetta is a master at -- hanging on to each thread and revealing the story with the right timing and with the right pacing, not an easy feat. This book was seamless and the characters so well-developed that it was a treat to read this.  I loved the characters in this book more than the story although the mystery is realistic, well done and offers great insight and social commentary.  But the characters! I loved them all - it was refreshing to read a book with so many beautiful, good and real characters. They were the real star of this book above and beyond the thriller/mystery but, really, when was the last time you could say that about a thriller or mystery? 

Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil came out earlier this week on October 11, 2016 and you can purchase HERE. I definitely recommend this one if you're looking for a thrilling police procedural with really well thought out and developed characters.
"She studied Henry IV this year. 'O, while you live, tell truth and shame the devil,'" Noor quoted. "She borrowed it from Shakespeare."  
"What truth is she referring to?"   
The hostility was back in her eyes as she studied him. As if he was supposed to know the truth according to the LeBracs and Sarrafs.   


  1. Marchetta is a Quinn of characterization. I’ll definitely read this book, though it gets lower ratings from my friends then her previous works.

  2. Not sure this is a book for me but I do love thriller/mysteries and it sounds pretty good. :)

  3. This sounds good and love that the characters are all so great. I had't heard of this one before so now it will be added. Great review!

  4. This sounds so good Eva, I love that there is more to this story than the mystery itself. Wonderful review!

  5. I'm glad to see you enjoyed it. I have it and have never read anything by this author!

  6. I need to read more Marchetta. I have a lot of her books but they always go unread. I'm so sad for myself. This one sounds like a good one though so thanks for the review.

  7. I am liking the sound of this one. I havent read this author yet but I know a bunch of people who like her. Great review!

  8. Not sure if this one is for me but it sounds interesting.

  9. I hadn't heard of this author before but I feel like I've heard the title. The character sounds really interesting! I'm glad you liked this one :)
    Genesis @ Latte Nights Reviews

  10. This is the author Nick really likes? Well one of them...
    Ahhh, this does sound really good but too heavy for me. #chickenforfeels

    Nereyda│ Nick & Nereyda’s Infinite Booklist

  11. This sounds great! I'm so glad you liked this one. I'll definitely have to read it sometime.


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