Liar, dreamer, thief

by Dong, Maria,

Format: Print Book 2023
Availability: Available at 4 Libraries 4 of 15 copies
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Katrina Kim may be broke, the black sheep of her family, and slightly unhinged, but she isn't a stalker . Her obsession with her co-worker, Kurt, is just one of many coping mechanisms-like her constant shape and number rituals, or the way scenes from her favorite children's book bleed into her vision whenever she feels anxious or stressed.

But when Katrina finds a cryptic message from Kurt that implies he's aware of her surveillance, her tenuous hold on a normal life crumbles. Driven by compulsion, she enacts the most powerful ritual she has to reclaim control-a midnight visit to the Cayatoga Bridge-and arrives just in time to witness Kurt's suicide. Before he jumps, he slams her with a devastating accusation: his death is all her fault.

Horrified, Katrina combs through the clues she's collected about Kurt over the last three years, but each revelation uncovers a menacing truth: for every moment she was watching him, he was watching her. And the past she thought she'd left behind? It's been following her more closely than she ever could have imagined.

A gripping page-turner, as well as a sensitive exploration of mental health, Liar, Dreamer, Thief is an intimate portrayal of life in all its complexities-and the dangers inherent in unveiling people's most closely guarded secrets.

Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "In Dong's fascinating and psychologically complicated first novel, readers will be left wondering about the hidden inner lives of those closest to them. Protagonist Katrina Kim embodies an exploration of mental illness that blurs the lines between coping and obsession. Attempting to balance her personal life, including estrangement from her parents, a rundown car, and debilitating compulsions, with her work life as a temp who is under constant threat of being fired and dangerously obsessed with Kurt, a co-worker whom she sees leap to his death, Katrina finds herself tangled up in Kurt's trouble and conducting an inquiry that unravels in confounding, even unbelievable ways. Murder, spying, lying, and stealing all converge to keep readers on their toes in this fast-paced tale as they confront a tumultuous and baffling series of events. From start to finish, this is a captivating story with dire puzzles that beg to be solved one chapter at a time while readers will continuously wonder whether Dong's narrator can be relied on at all, making for yet another intriguing mystery."
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "Broke and estranged from her Korean family, Katrina Kim, the narrator of Dong's mesmerizing debut, works a dead-end job at a soulless Illinois hospital billing firm. Her deepening reliance on OCD behaviors and her fear that the magical kingdom of a childhood book is becoming real throw her life into chaos, as does her obsession with her more successful colleague, Kurt Smith. Though Katrina and Kurt have barely spoken, the books and music she discovers searching his desk convince her that they're kindred souls. One day, she finds a postcard with a threatening message in his desk drawer. Terrified it's directed at her, she drives at midnight to the bridge she regularly visits, to perform the most potent of her self-soothing rituals. Then Kurt shows up, shouts some words of blame, and jumps to his death. Katrina is horrified and baffled. How does he know of Katrina's visits to the bridge? Was he surveilling her even as she surveilled him--and who is he really? Katrina's search for answers reveals secrets all around her. This nuanced depiction of a woman's struggles with isolation and mental health rings entirely true. Fans of sharp, inventive fiction will be eager for Dong's next. Agent: Amy Bishop, Dystel, Goderich & Bourret. (Jan.)"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Korean Americans -- Fiction.
Mental illness -- Fiction.
Stalking -- Fiction.
Suicide -- Fiction.
Secrecy -- Fiction.
Psychological fiction.
Thrillers (Fiction)
Publisher New York :Grand Central Publishing,2023
Edition First edition.
Language English
Description 324 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
ISBN 9781538723562
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