Title: White Lies
Author: Jayne Ann Krentz
Published: 2007, Putnam
Category: Contemporary/Paranormal Romance
This is my first Jayne Ann Krentz novel. Surprising, since she has about a million books out. I had read a historical (she publishes her historicals under the name Amanda Quick) by her years ago and remember being not at all impressed. But then recently I ran across Quick's Second Sight and was sucked right on in. Enjoyed it quite a lot. Second Sight introduced a new series--the Arcane Society, which is a secret society of paranormal "sensitives." She's going to be doing both historicals and contemporaries in the series, and White Lies is the first contemp Arcane book.
Clare Lancaster is a very powerful sensitive--her particular power is being able to tell when people are lying. She's always absolutely sure and is a sort of human lie detector. It's caused her a lot of trouble in the past, as she can't really have a normal social life. But it comes in handy sometimes, too, like when her estranged half-sister, Elizabeth, is being manipulated and abused by her husband. Clare is the only one who believes that Elizabeth's seemingly perfect husband is actually quite a baddie. When the husband is then murdered, things get sticky. Jake Salter is an investigator brought in by the Arcane Society to figure out what's going on.
This was quite a page-turner for me. Very suspenseful. And the paranormal elements were interesting and original, and not so over-the-top as they sometimes are, which was refreshing for me. It's like paranormal-lite. I think I like her JAK contemps more than her historicals. Her writing style seems to fit a little more naturally for contemps.
I loved Clare's theory on lying: "Lying is a universal talent...When you look at it objectively it seems obvious that the ability to lie is part of everyone's kit of survival tools, a side effect of possessing language skills...The way I see it, if people couldn't lie, they probably wouldn't be able to lie together in groups, at least not for very long or with any degree of sociability." I'd never really thought about it, but it's true. People lie all the time, and often for good reason. I actually often wish I was a better liar. Really, I would be the worst Poker player ever.
I have an older JAK in the tbr--Trust Me. It's been sitting there a while, but it might just get bumped up now. :)