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Reviewed by Charles Remington for Readers' Favorite
Leonard the Liar by Nicholas Gagnier opens with Leonard having a conversation with his daughter about her unusual name - a conversation which leads Leonard to reflect on some pivotal events in his past which helped to shape his life. It was a time when he was managing a video hire shop on behalf of disinterested owners and facing daily battles with militant, lazy staff while at the same time struggling to complete the vows for his upcoming wedding. But things were about to get more complicated when an old flame re-entered his life. Not sure of her intentions and worried about any impact on his wedding plans, his first instinct was to tell her to get lost. When he found out that she was dying with only three months to live, however, he found himself drawn into her end of life struggles. One thing after another ensues and how Leonard navigates his complex and to some extent self-inflicted troubles is brilliantly told by the talented Nicholas Gagnier.
I found myself quickly swept up in Leonard’s life. Nicholas Gagnier’s clever plotting ensures that the reader becomes swiftly immersed in events. The characters who inhabit Leonard the Liar are well-drawn, solid, and believable, and Leonard, if somewhat annoying at times, comes across very well. The narrative moves along at a brisk pace, providing a clear sense of place without resorting to long-winded descriptive prose. I enjoyed the novel, finding myself on several occasions reading for longer than I had intended (which I consider the mark of a good yarn). Mr. Gagnier is a gifted author and his work deserves a broad readership. I do not hesitate to recommend this book.