Heart of Lies (Paperback)

By M. L. Malcolm

HarperTorch, 9780061962189, 318pp.

Publication Date: June 8, 2010

August 2010 Indie Next List

“M L Malcolm weaves an engrossing tale of a man in conflict with himself. Leo Hoffman's unique mastery of languages offers him opportunities that motivate choices with far-reaching consequences in the years between the World Wars. Beginning in Budapest, Leo's journey into self-deception will take him into the subcultures of Paris, Vienna, and Shanghai and threaten his integrity and his love for the beautiful Martha Levy. Readers will be captivated by the well-researched history, exciting international intrigue, and one man's enduring passion.”
— Jane Glaser, Next Chapter Bookshop, Mequon, WI
View the List

Summer '11 Reading Group List

“M. L. Malcolm weaves an engrossing tale of a man in conflict with himself. Leo Hoffman's unique mastery of languages offers him opportunities that motivate choices with far-reaching consequences in the years between the World Wars. Beginning in Budapest, Leo's journey into self-deception will take him into the subcultures of Paris, Vienna, and Shanghai and threaten his integrity and his love for the beautiful Martha Levy. Readers will be captivated by the well-researched history, exciting international intrigue, and one man's enduring passion.”
— Jane Glaser, Next Chapter Bookshop, Mequon, WI
View the List
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Description

"A sweeping saga reminiscent of Jeffrey Archer and Susan Howatch, Heart of Lies is brilliantly researched and beautifully written. I could not put this book down."
--Karen White, New York Times bestselling author of The Girl on Legare Street A smart, exciting historical suspense novel set in Europe, Shanghai, and New York before World War II, Heart of Lies is a breathtaking introduction to M. L. Malcolm. This extraordinary new writer immediately takes an honored place among Frederick Forsyth (The Day of the Jackal), Ken Follett (Eye of the Needle), Susan Howatch (Glittering Images), and other masters of compelling historical fiction. Inspired by true events in the author's family's past, Heart of Lies is an extraordinary reading experience that Library Journal praises as, "A superbly crafted story, creatively capturing a slice of history with eloquence and realism."


Praise For Heart of Lies

“Fascinating and deftly-written....The writing is exquisite, wrapping the reader in another time and place.”
-Historical Novels Review on Heart of Lies

“Ambitious, captivating....The expansive plot and rapid-fire pacing are underscored by brilliant depictions of post–World War I Europe and Asia.”
-Atlanta Magazine on Heart of Lies

“A sweeping saga reminiscent of Jeffrey Archer and Susan Howatch, Heart of Lies is brilliantly researched and beautifully written. I could not put this book down.”
-Karen White, New York Times bestselling author of The Girl on Legare Street

“Heart of Lies takes the reader on a thrill ride that spans continents and decades, but at heart it’s an enduring love story.”
-Melanie Benjamin, author of Alice I Have Been

“A deeply compelling and extraordinary debut novel. It has everything you want: suspense, adventure, and romance across several continents.”
-Dorothea Benton Frank, New York Times bestselling author of Return to Sullivans Island



Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com

  1. In many ways Leo is a deeply flawed character. Did this affect how you related to him? Can you think of any other literary figures who were similarly "morally challenged"?
  2. Leo denies his Jewish heritage in an attempt to protect his family. What do you think of this decision?
  3. Martha and Leo both survive very tragic events in their lives. How do you think this affects them? What do you think of their reactions?
  4. Why do you think Leo made Maddy go with Amelia? To protect her, or himself?
  5. Which character seemed the most real to you?
  6. A different river is featured in every location. What, if anything, do you think each river symbolizes?
  7. What, if any, parallels do you see between the political situation in China in the 1920's and '30's, and some global trouble spots today? Is there anything to be learned from the experience of the European powers in Shanghai?
  8. A much older woman seduces Leo when he is very young. What, if anything, do you think this adds to the story? To the development of Leo's character?
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