Seven Lies

Seven Lies

Part political thriller, part meditation on the nature of desire and betrayal, Seven Lies tells the story of Stefan Vogel, a young East German, whose yearnings for love, glory, and freedom express themselves in a lifelong fantasy of going to America. By a series of increasingly dangerous maneuvers, he makes this fantasy come true, his past seemingly locked behind the Berlin Wall and a new life of unbounded bliss ahead of him. But then his world begins to fall apart.

Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize
Finalist for the Encore Award
Finalist for the James Tait Memorial Prize
An Economist Book of the Year

“Intense, powerful and superbly crafted.”  — The Times (UK)

“James Lasdun’s second novel is a marvel – exciting, atmospheric and the best summation to date of what it felt like to grow up on the other side of the wall.”  — Elena Seymenlyiska, The Guardian

“Combines the knuckle-whitening tension of a thriller with literary wit and the precision of a surgeon.”  — The Economist

“A taut transnational thriller.”  — The Believer

“Poet James Lasdun confirms his career as an important novelist…Macabre but sensationally authentic.”  — New York Sun

“James Lasdun is a tremendous writer and Seven Lies is that rare thing, a novel that delivers on every level. It is so gripping that you want to gobble it down at a single sitting, and yet the prose is so exacting that you want to linger over every sentence.”  — Geoff Dyer

“Pitch-perfect…And what finely wrought characters…[Seven Lies’s] complex plot falls into place with the irresistible inevitability of a clockwork’s gears and levers.”  — The Globe and Mail (Canada)

“Superb…Every page of this narration bears examples of Lasdun’s own poetic mastery…shockingly vivid.”  — Time Out

“A surprising and nuanced novel…that skillfully blends the political and the personal.”  — The New Republic

“Gloomily brilliant.”  — Times Literary Supplement

“Gripping and beautifully written…A structural tour de force…Lasdun’s art is partly that of the concealer. Stefan’s ‘crimes’ are disclosed with such quiet brilliance that the reader becomes absorbed into his world of noirish double and triple dealing as in a masterwork by John le Carre.”  — The Scotsman

Seven Lies…works like fingers around the throat, gradually tightening their grip as revelation follows revelation. It is grimly funny, painfully sad and beautifully written.”  — Marcus Eliason, Associated Press

“A riveting, thrillerish plot. Here is a stylist who’s also a fabulous storyteller.”  — Daily Telegraph (UK)

“An elegant, moving and intelligent book.”  — Irish Times

“Glorious.”  — The Observer

“Grips the reader from the start… Lean, artful, assured.”  — The Spectator (UK)

Seven Lies has a way of enlarging the spirit and refreshing the mind far more comprehensively than many books with twice its 200 pages…ingenious.”  — James Buchan, The Guardian

“Lasdun plunges directly into the contradictions of political and personal lives in an utterly original, gripping story. He writes  ardently, luminously of the innate corruptibility at the center of human life, the lies that sustain it, the truths that threaten it, and he keeps in a reader’s view the always shifting balance between the two, the temptation of falsehood, the struggle for probity. I admired the novel profoundly.”  — Paula Fox