Tell No Lies

Reading Guide

  1. Jack is deeply opposed to the death penalty, yet he acknowledges he’d probably feel differently if one of his own children became a victim of a crime. Is he a hypocrite? Or are his inconsistent beliefs (the dichotomy between what the mind believes and what the heart desires) typical of most people?
  2. And at the very end, why does Jack call Jeff? Do you believe he’s following his mind or his heart this time?
  3. Claire, similarly, faced a challenge to her views on adultery. Did she make the right decision about Jack at the end? Why do you believe she made the decision she did?
  4. Are there any topics about which you have strong feelings one way, but aren’t sure how you’d react if you were affected personally?
  5. Discuss Jack’s relationship with his brother Mark. Is Jack’s take on Mark (that he’s a womanizer) accurate? At one point Claire remarks on how similar the two brothers are – not only in looks, but in their personalities. Is she right? Why or why not?
  6. Was Claire misguided, or just naïve, in her attempt to set Jenny up with Mark? Why did she do it?
  7. Why, during the Barnard trial, did Jack decide not to further question the defendant, Clyde Hutchins?
  8. What was the significance of Jack’s interaction with the red-headed juror during Alex’s trial?
  9. Why was Earl so supportive of Jack?
  10. Jenny tells Jack that he’s a “good man.” Is it possible for him, or anyone, to be a “good man” and also an adulterer?
  11. Discuss Jenny’s relationship with Jack. Was she manipulative, or were her feelings for him genuine? Or both?
  12. Do you think Maxine Shepard realized Jenny was the daughter of the man with whom she’d had an affair years before?
  13. Do you think Jenny was guilty of Maxine’s murder? Why or why not?