I'll Tell You No Lies

By Amanda McCrina

Hardcover edition

Publisher Macmillan Imprint Farrar, Straus & Giroux ISBN


I'll Tell You No Lies

In stock


Discrimination: Xenophobia,Language: Mild Language,Violence: General,Violence: Gun Violence,Violence: War/Harsh Realities of War

From the acclaimed author of Traitor and The Silent Unseen, a YA novel of the Cold War era about a girl in post-WWII America who becomes entangled with an escaped Soviet pilot and must learn to decipher truth from lies.

July 1955. Eighteen-year-old Shelby Blaine and her father, an Air Force intelligence officer, have just been wrenched away from their old life in West Germany to New York’s Griffiss Air Force Base, where he has been summoned to lead the interrogation of an escaped Russian pilot. Still in shock from the car accident that killed her mother barely a month earlier, Shelby struggles as much with her grief and the emotional gulf between her and her father as having to start over in a new home. Then a chance meeting with the would-be defector spirals into a deadly entanglement, as the pilot’s cover story is picked apart and he attempts to escape his military and intelligence handlers, with Shelby caught in the middle. The more she learns of his secrets, including his detention at Auschwitz during the war, the more of an increasingly willing accessory Shelby becomes, even as she begins to see that she can only trust herself to discover who is lying and what is really happening.

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Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up-When 18-year-old Shelby Blaine gets relocated with her father to a new Air Force base, she is not expecting to find a wounded Soviet pilot hiding in their new house. Maksim insists he is a defector seeking refuge in the United States. What should Shelby do, when FBI and CIA agents arrive, looking for a KGB spy? When she confronts Maksim, the truth about his past becomes even murkier. Is the young man a defector or an enemy agent? Is he Ukrainian or Russian? What was he doing during WWII? McCrina develops an exciting, engrossing plot-as an unknown Soviet mole and known American operatives close in, Shelby and Maksim must choose what secrets to share, whether to trust one another, and how to save each other. The novel is sensitive to the complicated psychology and layered identities of the central and peripheral characters: Maksim is no more complicated than his CIA handler, a Jewish-German immigrant who adopts the bland surname "Jones." McCrina also has an eye for details that make the 1950s historical setting immersive, whether naming a brand of lipstick, describing summer in upstate New York, or pointing to a specific, Ukrainian neighborhood in Toronto. As to the romance: is a strapping young man likely to be up for some smooches while suffering from a broken ankle and ethylene glycol poisoning? Probably not? Will readers be cheering on Shelby and Maksim? Absolutely! VERDICT Thrilling, historically accurate, and morally complex, this title is sure to please readers of Elizabeth Wein.-Katherine Magyarodyα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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