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Set in the north-west of Britain, The Private Lie is the second in the Sam Dyke Investigations series.
Sam is a private investigator from a working-class environment who works amongst the wealthy and privileged of the Cheshire set—those whose morals and levels of discretion are offensive to him and go against his own values, forged in a strong family environment. The mysteries he unravels become personal crusades against entitlement, wealth and the abuse of power. Although he doesn’t moralise, he gets angry when he sees people who lie, steal and murder to get their way. Like Philip Marlowe and Sam Spade he has a clear view of what the world is actually like, but he nevertheless wants evil-doers set straight and will do what he can to help.
In The Private Lie Sam is asked by his long-lost son to find his girlfriend, Kelly, who has disappeared. Sam is at first reluctant because his son is threatening him—not the basis for a good client relationship. But when he starts his investigation he quickly comes across two Liverpudlian gangsters—the Ginger Twins—who provoke him with their arrogance and crude criminal behaviour that includes corruption and probably murder.
He also learns that the Twins are under surveillance from an undercover police operation, which he’s threatening to blow wide open by confronting them and putting them on their guard. So Sam is squeezed from all sides as he gets to the bottom of the Twins’ criminal empire.
In the end Sam and the Twins are set on a headlong confrontation that can only terminate in death or destruction.
Filled with fascinating characters, intriguing situations and exciting action, The Private Lie has topped Amazon’s ‘hard-boiled crime’ charts in both the UK and the US.