Award-winning author Lin Wilder brings the fifth novel in her Dr. Lindsey McCall medical mystery series to light in Plausible Liars. The fascinating and compelling subject matter coupled with the sparks that fly from Wilder’s pen make it impossible to put this book down until the last page is read!
Investigative journalist Kate Townsend had no idea the number of feathers she was going to ruffle after writing and publishing her series, "Corrupting America’s Children: Creating Chemical Eunuchs." Danny Sugarman, a three-year-old in the same preschool as her son was not only the victim, but her inspiration to write the series. When Kate happened to arrive early one day to pick up her son, ‘JH,’ she happens to see a group of children in a circle dancing around Danny. He was crying and looking at a cake as the children danced in a circle around him chanting: "...Susan come out..." (pg. 65) After watching the activity for a few minutes, Kate walked over to the group and was disturbed when she witnessed young Danny in a skirt and "...crying hysterically, screaming that he didn’t want to be Mia, over and over. The other kids, including JH, started to cry, too..." (pg. 66) When Kate approached the teacher, Addison, to help, little did she know that her act of listening to Danny and helping him remove the skirt Addison thought would be okay to dress him in and replace his trousers, would be an act that would come back to bite Kate tenfold.
Meanwhile, Kate’s friend Dr. Lindsey McCall is at the center of quite a storm that is brewing and the epicenter of the storm she is about to be thrown into is transgender politics. Joey Carmichael used to be Zoey until he met Dr. T, and the journey of her gender transition was born. Joey is an impressionable young teenager and his mother, Cassie, was never going to be mother of the year. She had her own set of problems with drugs and alcohol. Joey’s confidante was his journal and that was his safe place to share his turmoil: "...when I was little, I looked exactly like Mom did at age three, then four, then five: freckles, curly red hair, and dimples. She showed me pictures to prove it. I’ve heard that some kids get stories read to them before bed. Not me. Just about every night, she would bring out that photo album and touch it and then me. “You’re going to look just like me, Zoey, honey.” Oh no, Cassie Carmichael, I am not going to look just like you. In fact, by the time I’m done, we won’t look like we’re in the same genus. OK, diary that might be a slight exaggeration, but you’ll see..." (pg. 3) Time and circumstances will expose whether it is Dr. T (or Dr. McCall) who has Joey/Zoey’s real best interests at heart. What both Kate and Dr. McCall would soon be subjected to is the fight of their lives for their respective freedoms or life behind bars.
Lin Wilder has done an exceptional job of research (both medical and case study) and applied it to an equally fascinating read. The relatable believability and color applied to all characters in this riveting and very controversial read is fantastic. There are many opportunities throughout this read that have a sublime nuance toward all that humanity is faced with in our world today and all roads typically lead to: pick a side. I applaud an author with such enviable talents to incent awareness across many of the pages of this novel. There are triggering moments with outcomes that range from anger, sorrow, and the sense of innocence usurped to name a few. It’s difficult to site one particular scene toward either argument (for or against) gender transitioning or dysphoria when touching upon the storyline because Wilder has proficiently presented argument for both sides of the topic. Ergo, bravo! You have ‘shown’ your audience versus ‘tell’ and simply put, it is up to the reader to process and evaluate. Personally, I have great respect for Ms. Wilder for her unabashed willfulness to plant the seeds of faith throughout this read and it is because of this I personally maintain hope and faith for better times to come. Thank you for penning such a fascinating and educational read!
Quill says: Plausible Liars may be a work of fiction, but it is hauntingly real in the societal climate of today.
Synopsis: Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Kate Townsend knew she would lob an incendiary device into the contemporary culture if she wrote and published her series, Corrupting America's Children: Creating Chemical Eunuchs. But because of what she'd witnessed in her son's pre-kindergarten, she felt obligated to do it.
In a remarkable convergence of events, Lindsey McCall is also drawn into the explosive world of transgender politics. For the second time in four years, Lindsey is facing indictment for unintentional murder. The US Department of Justice has indicted both McCall and Townsend in a conspiracy of mammoth proportions.
Critique: "Plausible Liars" is the fifth novel of author Lin Wilder's award-winning Lindsey McCall medical mystery series. Once again her readers will find embedded into the original storyline innovative medical research loved that is so deftly combined with a dramatic courtroom scenario guaranteed to provoke and challenge her readers. Showcasing Wilder's genuine flair for originality and the kind of narrative storytelling style that keeps the reader's full attention from start to finish, "Plausible Liars" is especially and unreservedly recommended for community library Contemporary Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Plausible Liars" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.49).
Editorial Note: Lin Wilder (www.linwilder.com) holds a doctorate in Public Health from the UT at Houston with a background in cardiopulmonary physiology, medical ethics, and hospital administration. During her thirty-plus years in academic healthcare administration, Lin authored numerous texts in these fields. She began writing fiction after leaving her Hospital Director position at UMASS Medical Center. Since then, Lin has received many awards for her two series of novels. Her medical mystery series also includes: The Fragrance Shed By A Violet, Do You Solemnly Swear? A Price for Genius and Malthus Revisited.
Plausible Liars is a work of fiction in the mystery, legal drama, and suspense subgenres, and is part of the Dr. Lindsey McCall Medical Mystery series. The work is best suited to the general adult reading audience. Penned by author Lin Wilder, this engaging tale delves into the explosive world of parenting politics, intertwining the lives of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Kate Townsend and Dr. Lindsey McCall. Townsend's investigative series, Corrupting America's Children, exposes the controversial landscape of chemical manipulation. Simultaneously, McCall faces indictment for unintentional murder, navigating a conspiracy of monumental proportions.
Author Lin Wilder has crafted an engaging and tense tale that combines medical mystery with a gripping courtroom drama, offering readers an intriguing blend of innovative medical research and a thought-provoking legal scenario. The narrative challenges societal norms and explores the intricate connections between personal choices, medical ethics, and the consequences of unintended actions, taking a very extreme example of sinister manipulation and placing it at the center of events. I was impressed by the novel’s pacing, which builds the case and the extraneous events around it in a natural fashion as it slow-burns into a deeply challenging and conspiracy-fuelled battle of wits. Wilder's ability to weave a complex narrative while addressing sensitive topics is commendable, creating a novel that both captivates and stimulates contemplation on the ethical dilemmas embedded in modern medicine and journalism, as well as public reaction to extreme cases. Overall, I would recommend Plausible Liars to fans of thought-provoking legal dramas and well-penned suspense tales everywhere.