Golden State

Ben H. Winters

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Set in a future dystopia where lies, no matter how small or well-intentioned they may be, are criminal acts, Golden State is a murder mystery with a twist. 

Laszlo Ratesic is a citizen of the Golden State, and a detective of the Speculative Service; a man with a psychic gift (or curse) that tells him when a person is lying.  The Speculative Service is full of men and women like him, who hunt and prosecute liars to the full extent of the law.   Lies are what caused the end of the old world, so cannot be allowed in the only remaining community.  Liars are sent to jail if they are lucky, the unlucky ones are banished to a lingering death.

Saddled with a new partner he neither wants nor appreciates, Laz is allocated the case of an apparent suicide.  What should be an easy truth to discover becomes increasingly evasive, and Laz is forced to question not only his conscience and ability, but also the fabric of the society in which he lives.

Golden State starts slowly but builds into a riveting read with flavours of 1984 and film noir.  I’ve never heard of this author before reading this book, but I will definitely be searching out his back catalogue.

I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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