Five star reviews from Readers' Favorite

A TRAIL OF LIES

When we practice to deceive, what a web of lies we leave

My mother always said that and it’s very true. From one tiny fib comes a world of confusion and it’s always the innocent who suffer the most.

A Trail of Lies was awarded five stars by Readers’ Favorite and earned a top genre winner’s seal in the Authors’ Cave Book Awards 2014.

A distraught teenage girl, a lonely mountain of secrets, a boy skilled in bush-craft, what could possibly go wrong?

“You hate too many things, Cal,” he sighed, brushing stray curls away from her face. “Your heart doesn’t have room for it all.”

When Callister Rhodes runs away from home, she expects to leave her problems behind. Persuading a classmate to take her into the bush on Mount Pirongia, they stumble on a secret that is not easily forgotten and its menace follows her back to Hamilton, staining her new life with old, familiar wounds.

What happens in the bush should stay in the bush, but it won’t. As the consequence of what they did wraps itself around the teenagers, they find themselves in danger. Calli realises all too late that the demons in her past have come full circle and want payback.

The treacherous New Zealand bush offers Calli love and salvation before snatching both cruelly away. But in her quest to find escape she is forced to test her own limits and ultimately, learn to live beyond the trail of lies.

What readers are saying

The first edition of A Trail of Lies was originally published as Blaming the Child.

“K. T. Bowes is a skilled storyteller. She demonstrates the mastery of her craft over and over with her novels.” Jada Ryker

“The plot and the twists that K.T. Bowes incorporates are first class.” W Stuart

“The characters were crafted with excellence.” Athena

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If you’re not sure, here is a sample of the novel to whet your appetite.

A Trail of Lies

Chapter 1

The dull razor blade tinkled out onto the shower tray, glinting up at her beneath the cascading water. Calli stood holding the now redundant plastic casing of her razor, her olive face scowling in irritation at the implement’s betrayal. What else could go wrong today?

The teenager looked down at her tanned calves, which she thanked the week of sun and her outdoor sports lessons for, as the shower spray pounded the back of her willowy neck. They didn’t look too hairy; she could probably get away with it for today – as long as they didn’t have assembly. Anyone sitting on the assembly hall floor close to her would notice the small protrusions of downy hair sneaking out of her pores. Calli considered shouting for her mother, instantly rejecting the thought. The new razors were in the hall cupboard. Marcia would be sure to yell at her, especially at the moment while she was trying to get ready for work and sort the little kids out.

Calli let the soap run from her body unhindered. She smoothed conditioner into her unruly, black curls and let it stay there, the wetness touching the bottom of her back uncomfortably. She turned off the shower even as the frantic knocking sounded on the bathroom door. “Hurry up, Calli, I’ve got netball practice at seven thirty! If I’m not there on time, the coach will make me sit out of the first quarter on Saturday. Come out, or I’ll get Mum!”

Exasperated, Calli snatched up the errant razor blade and gingerly picked her way out of the slippery shower. Winding her towel around her so she could unlock the bathroom door and admit her desperate, whining sister, she felt the blade’s sharp point slip underneath the skin of her index finger and winced. She couldn’t leave it in the bathroom bin in case Jase found it. She wouldn’t put it past her baby brother to do some serious damage to himself, out of boyish curiosity. “There!” she said rudely to the skinny blonde girl who bounced up and down on the balls of her feet outside the bathroom in a thin, cotton nightdress. “Try to get up on time next week.”

Calli was almost at her bedroom door when her sister let out a piercing screech, “Mum! Callister’s been using my shower gel!”

Calli rolled her appealing blue eyes and slammed her door on the ensuing scene, currently unfolding on the landing outside the bathroom. The razor blade produced a small nick that was painful, but not life-threatening. It bled a little as the sixteen year old got dressed in her school uniform, tartan skirt and white blouse. She pulled her damp curls back into a ponytail and pouted lips that rarely exhibited their fullness in a smile. Of all of her siblings, Calli was the only one who looked like her Samoan father. Raven haired and olive skinned like Simon, the others were blonde; blue eyed, sylphlike carbon copies of Marcia, their mother. It always made Calli feel like an outsider, her dark ringlets betraying her even when the other children were white blonde from the sunshine. She once heard an old lady in the park ask her mother if she was adopted. Calli would have loved to have been blonde, with easy-to-manage poker straight hair. She might have fitted in better.

Sighing, the girl straightened her school tie and slipped on the horrid black roman sandals that were part of the school issue uniform. Turning away from the mirror after a cursory check, she refused to look at herself again. There was no point. It changed nothing.

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