Welcome to the final discussion of The Good Liar.
How do you feel after finishing the book? Were you surprised by the ending? Did you see any of that coming?
Chapter 13 sure started off interestingly, didn't it? Roy was injured by a fall and seemed out of commission. Did you wonder for a moment if the fall wasn't an accident? I kind of wondered if Betty had something to do with it, but we don't ever get that confirmation by the end of the book. When Betty talks to her grandson, Steven, she drops hints that she has something that she wants from Roy. She says she can't lose her nerve, and she says she can't let go until she completes her task. Did you have any idea what she was talking about when you first read that part? Did you guess what she was working on?
I felt completely sick to my stomach when reading the chapter about Hans Taub and his actions in 1938. First of all, I was shocked to be reading about Hans Taub because I didn't suspect that Roy was Hans. I really thought Hans was just an interpreter who died earlier in the book. I was surprised that he was actually Roy. I could not believe the way he acted around the sisters. That was so incredibly gross and upsetting. Especially his attack on Lili. That was just heartbreaking. And, I couldn't believe the way he acted towards his parents and the Schroders. He was so willing to sabotage the Schroders just to save his own skin, and, I guess, to get back at the sisters for making him feel small? It was crazy to me that the things that a 14 year old boy said to authorities really were taken so seriously. It's wild that his lie was able to affect the Schroders so deeply. I just don't think I would trust a boy so quickly. Roy's parents had horrible ends, too, with his mom being arrested and executed and his father killing himself. They were too good to have an evil son like Roy.
Were you confused by the scene where Roy and Betty sign the money over to the account? I didn't guess that Vincent would help Betty. That was really surprising to me.
Did you immediately guess that Lili was Betty? It was really hard to read that chapter, I thought, because she was completely innocent but suffered so horribly. I was glad that she survived the war and was able to connect with people who cared for her. And, I was thankful that Searle didn't go into great detail about Lili's time in the concentration camps. I don't think I would have been able to read any gruesome details. I was glad that she was able to be happy with her husband, and I was glad that she had a family. Were you shocked when it was revealed that Stephen wasn't her grandson? I definitely didn't see that coming. I thought he was her grandson, but I did think that he had been researching Roy. I was so surprised that Gerald and Stephen were working for her and that she had a whole other family somewhere else. The depth of her deception was deeper than I thought.
It was interesting to me that Betty decided to confront Roy in person. Did you understand why she would want to do that? It was more satisfying, I imagine, that just wondering what he thought when he read her note. I was totally fooled by her lie that she found the locket with hair. Didn't you think that was totally believable? Did you hope that Roy would break down and confess all of his crimes? I wish he would have, but I can see that wouldn't match very well with his character. Did any details really stick out to you in that chapter? Were you able to follow all of the intricacies of Betty's plan and all of the things she was revealing about Roy? It was a lot of information to receive all at one time.
Did you think Betty's grandson, Andrew, was going to kill Roy? I totally did. I was surprised when he just tore up the check.
Were you satisfied with the ending? Did you want Roy to be punished in some way? He apparently was tormented mentally, but he didn't have to suffer any legal consequences. What about Betty? Do you think she was happier after confronting Roy?
What details did I miss talking about? Did you enjoy the book? Did you enjoy the mystery? Would you read another book by this author?
If you liked this book and are eager to read more like it, check out this list of similar titles I created. Make sure to let me know if you enjoy anything on the list.
Before you go, check out a clip from the movie version below. In what ways does the movie seem different than the book?
Thanks for joining us this month! Make sure to leave a comment to let me know what you thought about the book! And, join us next month as we read Beautiful Creatures. I can't wait to hear from you in the comments section!