In perhaps the most profound character portrait she has ever drawn, America's bestselling true-crime writer, Ann Rule, asks, Can the female really be deadlier than the male? In Heart Full of Lies, she answers that question in one of her most intriguing tales ever -- a riveting story of seduction, betrayal, and murder.
Liysa and Chris Northon seemed the epitome of idyllic lovers when they married on a moonlit beach in Hawaii. Their friends admired the romantic couple: Chris -- tall, athletic, handsome with a thatch of blond hair, a pilot for Hawaiian Airlines -- and Liysa -- attractive, charismatic, seductive, an acclaimed surf photographer, with a tanned, perfect body. Their son, Bjorn, looked just like his dad, and they were raising Liysa's son by a previous marriage. They had beautiful homes on the mainland and in Hawaii.
But it wasn't long before Chris saw a side of Liysa that he hadn't glimpsed before. Nothing was quite enough for her -- she wanted more money, more property, and a future that included fame as a Hollywood screenwriter. She complained to her closest friends that her husband was a heavy drinker who beat her. The marriage seemed to be unraveling, but Chris struggled to hold it together, afraid he'd be separated from Bjorn and from Liysa's son, Papako. And then the worst happened.
On a sunny morning in October 2000, Chris Northon lay dead in a sleeping bag at a campsite beside a pristine river, while his wife drove four hours to a friend's house, sobbing inconsolably. She appeared to have been beaten, and had a black eye and bruises on her knee. Was Chris's death a tragic accident or a deliberate homicide? Was Liysa involved? Questions arose that made Oregon State detectives suspicious, yet her family and friends stood staunchly by her, incredulous that anybody would ask such questions.
Ann Rule became involved with the mystery of Chris's death when one of his fellow pilots at Hawaiian Airlines contacted her, and only later did she learn that the ranking Oregon State Police investigator had thought of her to tell this bizarre story. A book that leads the reader from Hawaii to the Northwest to Hollywood, Heart Full of Lies is an extraordinary character study as well as a brilliant investigative report that will keep you enthralled to the very last page.
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1 . A women who only thinks of herself and a husband who would do anything to try and hold his family together.
Posted January 28, 2011 by ReadingLover , Moose JawI love Anne Rule, I have read many of her books and this one didn't disappoint! I enjoyed it from start to finish. She does an excellent job of working you through the web that the women in this book created.
December 31, 2002
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Excerpt from Heart Full of Lies by Ann Rule
Almost every book I have researched has had a beginning, a middle, and an end that were obvious when I began. By the time the defendant went to trial, his -- or her -- guilt appeared to be well established. There was little question that a sudden death might have been an accident or a suicide. There was no particular mystery about "who-dunnit?" Although loyal family members might have been in one corner or another, the mass of witnesses were testifying against the defendant.
In Heart Full of Lies, I found instead an emotional tug-of-war with dozens of people pulling on the victim's side and as many fiercely loyal to the accused. To this day, most of their allegiances have remained steadfast. Initially, I was puzzled that anyone could find the deceased so flawed and the defendant so angelic. Few human beings are either all good or all bad. The only way I have managed to deal with this impasse has been to show both sides as clearly as possible.
Still, in the end, the truth began to sift out of a morass of statements. I've noted that correspondence sent to me anonymously came from those who praised the defendant. They would give neither their names nor their positions in the defendant's life. On the other hand, the friends of the person who died were ready to step forward and give me their names and their connection to this case.
It is difficult to place your trust in people who hide in the shadows of anonymity. Did you personally see this happen? I asked again and again, trying to cut through the curtain that email with its endless choice of screen names affords. Could this have been an accident? And the answer was always No.
Then how do you know what happened? I pressed.
I just know, they all answered, either because they were absolutely convinced they were right or because they had been charmed and bewitched and manipulated by a brilliant and charismatic sociopath.