Why Men Lie

Paperback | February 5, 2013

byLinden Macintyre

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Why Men Lie is about Effie, the fascinating sister of the troubled priest at the heart of The Bishop's Man. Effie has had her fair share of lovers and husbands, including the Gillis cousins from Cape Breton, who have been a source of as much guilt as joy. She first married John, then ran away to Toronto with the charismatic Sextus, who is still in her life despite her having divorced him years ago. But she's more or less given up on being swept away by love, until, in a chance encounter, she meets a person who might very well be the perfect man. And love once again rears its thorny head, with all its troublesome illusions, at an age when maintaining illusions is hard.
 
Even Effie, as wise as any woman can be to the ways of men, is unprepared for the maelstrom her new love affair will unleash. Or for the particularly male desperation and vanity that is its cause.

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From the Publisher

Why Men Lie is about Effie, the fascinating sister of the troubled priest at the heart of The Bishop's Man. Effie has had her fair share of lovers and husbands, including the Gillis cousins from Cape Breton, who have been a source of as much guilt as joy. She first married John, then ran away to Toronto with the charismatic Sextus, who...

LINDEN MacINTYRE is a co-host of the fifth estate and the winner of 9 Gemini Awards for broadcast journalism. His bestselling first novel, The Long Stretch, was nominated for a CBA Libris Award and his boyhood memoir, Causeway: A Passage from Innocence, was a Globe and Mail Best Book and won the Edna Staebler Award for Non-Fiction and ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:384 pages, 7.9 × 5.3 × 0.99 inPublished:February 5, 2013Publisher:Random House of CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0307360873

ISBN - 13:9780307360878

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Customer Reviews of Why Men Lie

Reviews

Rated 1 out of 5 by from Why Men Lie A book written from a woman's point of view would be better written by a woman. This one doesn't cut it. Very disjointed. Hard to follow the digressions into and out of memories. I still don't know why men lie.
Date published: 2014-08-22
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Mixed Feelings about this Story Book 3, in the Cape Breton Trilogy “Why Men Lie”, the last volume in the trilogy is actually an extension to “The Bishop’s Man” (book 2) where Priest Duncan MacAskill , known as the “fixer” was the center figure. This latest features Effie MacAskill- Gillis, Duncan’s sister, as the main player and is set mostly in Toronto and in Cape Breton during the late 1990’s. The story follows further the community and the family saga we have come to know in the previous installments. The central theme in “Why men Lie” is impotence: physical, mental, intellectual as well as sexual and revolves around lies and deception. Narrated in the third person from Effie’s perspective, the novel chronicles the journey of a middle-aged woman and a highly regarded Celtic scholar making her way into the world of men that has populated her life. I join those who have mixed feelings about this book. In one hand, this is undeniably a complex, well-crafted novel with excellent prose but on the other hand the plot missed to deliver intrigue successfully. IMO the novel resonates more as a domestic fiction with ever changing series of flashbacks to anything else. Mr. MacIntyre is a master in dialogue and the characters definitely talk a lot, in fact they ramble quite freely, at times in Gaelic. This is a very slow moving story that highlights the author’s love for the east coast and it takes him a long time to make a point. In reality it gave me time to pause and mull over the question “Why men Lie?”……In the book women lie as much……( is that so :)) This novel is interesting in many ways but it was just missing that captivating quality to be invested deeply into it or compelled to keep turning the pages at rapid pace. “Why Men Lie” is definitely not as great as its predecessor “The Bishop Man” but nevertheless worth spending time with.
Date published: 2013-05-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Macintyre continues to delight If you were a fan of Macintyre's Giller-winning The Bishop's Man, you'll probably enjoy Why Men Lie, for no other reason than it features the same protagonists. This time, the action follows Effie, sister of the priest, and presented with a great deal more vulnerability than in the earlier work. What I have always found most enjoyable about McIntyre is his style. His scenes are terse, diving right in to the action and saying what needs to be said before moving on. His characters are all haunted by past demons, they all appear to be in various stages of alcoholism, but they all work because what he does the very best is write humans being. It's a tricky thing writing interesting tales grounded in reality, tales that could be about the folks next door. McIntyre does that without shortchanging on conflict.
Date published: 2013-05-16
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Great for those who liked the Bishop's Man After spending a few days with this novel, reading and rereading passages, I can honestly say it is one interesting experiment of a book. Once you crack open Why Men Lie, it won't take long for you to realize that Linden MacIntyre is trying to make a point. It wasn't always clear to me what that point was but there was definitely more than a simple story here. This wasn't really a surprise to me, his earlier book The Bishop's Man, also carried a strong message and after years on the fifth estate I imagine he probably has a lot of points/ideas he wants to get out. Trying to figure out, just what exactly he was trying to communicate was probably my favourite part of the entire novel. I hadn't realized right away that this book is a companion novel of sorts to The Bishop's Men. Effie is the sister of Duncan, the protagonist of The Bishop's Man. She's not a major player in the first novel but it's interesting to see how MacIntyre expands on her story. If you ever find yourself wondering what happens to a specific character after a story ends, you may be interested in Why Men Lie. It gives life to characters who otherwise would have be forgotten. MacIntyre also makes the daring move of writing this new novel from a women's point-of-view. I say daring because I can't even begin to count the number of male authors who have fallen flat on their face when trying to attempt this feat. I have to admit he pulls it off pretty well. Effie has a strong voice and a somewhat overbearing attitude. And I think MacIntyre captures it perfectly. At times she drove me crazy and made me want to hit her over the head with the very book I was reading, but in the back of the head I knew I was supposed to feel that way. This is a novel that gave me pause and still has me mulling over the question of "Why Men Lie?" That being said, despite the interesting premise and the strong narrative voice, this book is no Bishop's Man. It was just missing that captivating quality that made me want to keep reading and cast aside all the other books in favour of this one. Maybe that's asking too much? But that's how I want every book to make me feel - and having read and loved The Bishop's Man, I know Linden MacIntyre is capable of writing a book that makes me feel that way. An interesting novel, that I recommend to those who are already fans of Linden MacIntyre, as well as those who love Canadian literary fiction. There's some good stuff here, it's worth taking a look at. This and other reviews at Christa's Hooked on Books (http://christashookedonbooks.blogspot.com)
Date published: 2012-04-28

Extra Content

Bookclub Guide

1. The novel begins with a passage from T.S. Eliot’s collection “Four Quartets”: Time present and time past / Are both perhaps present in time future, / And time future contained in time past.” Throughout the book, and in the very last scene, more passages from Eliot’s collection are quoted. What do these passages convey about the way the past keeps affecting the present in this novel?2. Effie, now in middle age, is feeling independent and self-sufficient. Would she be better off without J.C., or is their relationship worthwhile despite his dishonesty?3. This book’s title seems to point to a divide in gender power. Effie is focused on the men in her life who lie to her, but what effect have the women who lie in this novel had on those around them?4. Are any of J.C.’s lies to Effie about his personal history justified?5. After half a lifetime of disappointing and failed relationships, Effie thinks there’s something different about J.C., and she takes a chance on him. What is it about J.C. that makes her think he will be different from the other men in her life?6. When Sextus offers Effie the memoir he has written, which includes very personal details about both of their lives, she hides it away in a drawer for a long time without reading it. What do you think she’s afraid of finding in that manuscript?7. After meeting Sam, the Canadian convict on death row, J.C. becomes intent on hearing his side of the story, and allowing Sam the only form of autonomy left within his reach – the power to tell his story to the media. J.C. then tells Effie that he’s working on a book about impotence. What is it about this story and this subject that captivates J.C. so completely?8. Effie has a long history in Cape Breton, but most of her life is now lived in Toronto. Did you feel the two different settings affected her behaviour from one place to the other?9. Paul, the man Effie meets in the coffee shop, turns out to be an unwanted presence who won’t leave her alone. One day, he breaks into Effie’s home and steals the unread memoir written by Sextus, but nothing else. Why do you think Paul is so obsessed with Effie, whom he barely even knows?10. It seems like all of the men in Effie’s life have disappointed her – all except for Conor, who died while they were still in a relationship. How do you think that loss impacted Effie?11. Conor says to Effie, “Love and friendship are only temporary absences from solitude. Sunny days. You can’t keep sunshine in a jar” (p. 139). Do you agree with this statement? Why or why not?12. In the book’s acknowledgements, Linden MacIntyre writes that growing up in a household full of women, and working with many intelligent female journalists, is what gave him the insight to write this novel from a woman’s perspective. Do you think he was successful in writing from the female point of view?This reader’s guide has been prepared by Bookclub-in-a-Box, www.bookclubinabox.com

Editorial Reviews

"A taut intellectual thriller that proceeds at a stately pace in the early going but then races at maximum speed toward its inevitable, and lethal, conclusion." Toronto Star"A novel for our time." Winnipeg Free Press"Powerful and compelling." Robert J. Wiersema, National Post"A nuanced novel.... MacIntyre can build suspense from thin air." MacLean's"Why Men Lie has the flavour of a peaty single-malt." The Globe and Mail"An impressively crafted page-turner.... Vintage Linden MacIntyre, and a crisp, compelling successor to the Cape Breton-born writer's first two novels." London Free Press