Author: Jeffry W. Johnston

First Edition: 2016

Pages:  244

Genre: Thriller, Suspense, Young adult fiction

“One finger for each lie,” he says. “Do you understand?”–THE TRUTH

Trapped to a chair in a dark basement that he does not recognize, Chris is forced to tell the truth about the thirteen-year-old runaway who bled to death on his kitchen floor eight nights ago.

Eight nights ago, Chris, in self-defense, killed Derek’s brother. And people said to him, it was the right thing to do. But, Derek brings out a truth that is not so easy to digest.

Was really the right thing to do? Was Derek’s brother really a threat? Is killing another human being, in self-defense, always the right thing to do? In case of self-defense, is the truth always simple to find?

The truth?

I have mixed feeling about this novel. The end of the story is predictable and the plot a bit boring , apart from the dialogues between Chris and Derek—Chris’ torturer.

There are too many baseball scenes in the novel. These scenes gobble up and destroy the suspense created by the interrogation and confession scenes, breaking up the tension too fast and too soon.

Nonetheless, in the hands of the right educator, this novel could become a great discussion and debate tool.

The key takeaway from the novel, hidden underneath dysfunctional families, moody teenagers, and guilty human beings, is that there are no absolute truths. Truth is always relative to a person, a culture, a language.

What’s just for a person could be unfair for another person. What we decide to do in any given situation, is always based on a choice related to what we believe is true in that given situation. Often, we hide behind our truth. Often, we fabricate our truth. Often, we believe our truth, even if it is a lie. Often, we justify our truth as the only right thing to do in a given moment.

“Everybody always says, “Do the right thing.” But sometimes the right thing isn’t clear. Sometimes you just have to choose and then live with the consequences the best you can.”

There are no absolute truths, just decisions and consequences we have to face and accept.

Brothers–Colored Pencil and Oil Pastel on Paper by Ink n Paper



    1. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ How many hearts can I fit in this post????? Your comment warmed my heart! You must read this book, but if you are not a baseball fan, skip the baseball scenes! 😉
      Do you know that I check your blog at least twice a day for great books to read? Your reviews intrigue me and make me run to the bookstore!!!!! Keep writing and please keep reading those amazing books so I too can read them.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. John,
      It is an okay book. It is labeled as a suspense/thriller/ psychological novel, but I did not get much suspense from it. I was a bit disappointed because I was expecting a novel at the manner of Shirley Jackson but, instead, I got a novel about our moral compass.
      It is a great story to use in a lesson plans about the ability to judge what is right and wrong and act accordingly. Certainly, not a story to read on Halloween night…unless you get scared by the moral compass…;)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. the opposite can sometime happen: when you get hold of a book or go to see a film with low expectations and then are pleasantly surprised or even blown away by what you’ve encountered. you ever had that ?

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw Thank you!!!!!!! I have to start making art again at a daily basis. I have to take my state exam in art ( for my art teacher license) and I have to send to the state board four art pieces by the end of November….books are truly helping the creative brainstorming!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I am really enjoying your blogs and learning about so many thought-provoking books. I didn’t see a search box on the blog and am wondering if you’ve read Silence by Shusaku Endo. It’s profoundly disturbing, but an excellent read. There was a film version released in recent years, but I haven’t seen it — and I probably don’t want to see it. Anyway, have you read it? If not, please consider adding it to your list!


    1. How do I add a search box? I am so new to blogging 😉
      No I have not read Silence but I added to my list of books to order! I googled the title and I am already intrigued by the book. A good book for spooky October and hey…I am a sucker for historical fiction!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think you can go to “Appearance” and then go to “Widgets” to add a search box. If that doesn’t work, let me know, and I’ll browse a little more. Silence is a really powerful book, but as I said before, it’s also disturbing. Like a lot of good books, it can be difficult reading emotionally.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. yes, and that’s the best feeling ever! My husband wanted me to watch the movie A Quite Place. I started watching it with low expectations and then I fell in love with the atmosphere and photography of the movie. I think it was pure genius to create a movie in which people are forced not to talk….so viewers can focus on visuals and emotions….I did not like the part about the aliens ( so cliche’!) but everything else was extremely cool to watch.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s