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Fatal Lies (Liebermann Papers #3)

3.82  ·  Rating Details  ·  576 Ratings  ·  66 Reviews
A dogged police inspector and an insightful young psychiatrist match wits with depraved criminal minds in this acclaimed mystery series set in Freud's Vienna.
In glittering turn-of-the-century Vienna, brutal instinct and refined intellect fight for supremacy. The latest, most disturbing example: the mysterious and savage death of a young cadet in the most elite of military
Paperback, 439 pages
Published February 24th 2009 by Random House Trade (first published January 1st 2008)
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(showing 1-30 of 915)
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Oh no, not another series! I picked this up and started reading it without realizing it is part of a series and this is number 3. Unfortunately, I liked it enough that I will have to go back and read 1 and 2, this on top of the series by P.D. James that contains 14 in all. Oh yeah, and Storm picked up book #13 in the Janet Evanovich Plum series, not to mention the Maeve Binchy books I got during one of our book exchanges and Nicole has got me thinking I might enjoy some Stephen King again. Looks ...more
Jun 05, 2012 Ellen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the second mystery in this series that I've read, and for some reason this one wasn't quite as interesting as the first one. Takes place a military school for boys in Germany in the early 1900s, where strange things are happening. Boys are dying, and no one can figure out why the boy whose death started the investigation has died. There is a lot of bullying taking place in this school, and the headmaster appears to be in on it. He's named Eichmann, and in the postscript Tallis tells us t ...more
Oct 31, 2012 Sara rated it it was amazing
Zelenka, a Czech scholarship boy, dies at St. Florian's military academy near Aufkirchen, seemingly of natural causes, but Rheinhardt suspects foul play even before the history of bullying at the school comes to light. This is Rheinhardt's book - the parallel between his struggle for parity with Von Bulow, his well-born "superior," and the conflict between the well-born boys of St. Florian's and the poor scholarship boys, ties the book together.

Liebermann has an important role in interviewing w
Jul 17, 2009 James rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, mitteleuropa
It was, in part, the inspiration of Robert Musil's novella, The Confusions of Young Torless, about a young cadet struggling toward self-definition while experiencing the erotic tensions of puberty, that led Frank Tallis to write the mystery novel Fatal Lies.
The heart of the mystery is the machinations a small group of cadets led by Kiefer Wolf, a precocious underclassman. They are attending a private boys' school, Saint Florian, that is replete with ancient traditions and eccentric teachers. It
Alison C
Dec 09, 2015 Alison C rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Fatal Lies" is the third novel in Frank Tallis’ Liebermann Papers series, set in Vienna at the turn of the 20th Century. In this outing, Detective Inspector Rheinhardt is asked to look into the unexpected death of a young student at a nearby military academy, a place where prejudice and sadism are, if not explicitly encouraged, at least not seriously frowned upon by the school authorities. It seems that one such bully has relatives in high places, which creates difficulty for Rheinhardt, and he ...more
Mar 22, 2009 Dave rated it liked it
Not a bad follow-up to the earlier books--I still like the protagonists and the turn-of-the-century Vienna setting. But this one tries to cram too much in--Rorschach blots, "Young Torless," absinthe, Hungarian spies, Mahler, Freud, and the supposed banality of evil. Too much research, and he doesn't write well enough to fully digest it. But still looking forward to more in the series.
Apr 03, 2013 Quillracer rated it really liked it
I liked this book, the third in Tallis’s Vienna series, better than the first one, A Death In Vienna. Perhaps this is because I am more familiar with the characters now. But also because this novel seemed more closely focused than the first one. There are, as in that one, chapters written from other than the main characters’ point of view, but this time they don’t seem to jump all over the place as they did in that one.

In my review of A Death In Vienna, I remarked that more than a few of Tallis’
Mar 09, 2010 Jeffrey added it
Shelves: mysteries
By the time I got through this, the third Max Liebermann mystery, the shtick was wearing pretty thin for me. The writing is often mannered and pretentious, though the characters are pretty one-dimensional. Though Tallis tries to indicate some of Liebermann's limitations or failings, Liebermann is basically an infallible psychoanalyst-detective, who does everything from face down mortal danger (twice in this book) to enlighten Sigmund Freud on the probable connection between his youthful cocaine ...more
Dec 28, 2009 Anne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The third installment of Tallis's turn of the 20th century Vienna-based thriller series is the best of the bunch thus far. When an unexplained death takes place at an exclusive private boy school, Inspektor Rheinhardt senses that something isn't quite right. The boy, a scholarship student, has odd scars on his body and has developed a seemingly inappropriate relationship with one of his teachers. As usual, Rheinhardt brings in Freudian psychoanalyst, Liebermann, to ferret out the truth behind th ...more
Fatal Lies is the third of the Liebermann series about a Vienna psychoanalyst and his sidekick, a police inspector Oskar Rheinhardt. Rheinhardt and Liebermann sing Lieder and solve crimes together in turn-of-the-20th-century Vienna and encounter all manner of famous folk of the time, including Vienna's notorious anti-Semitic mayor Karl Lueger, Liebermann's mentor Siegmund Freud, and his musical idol, Gustav Mahler.

In this installment, Rheinhardt is called upon to solve the suspicious death of a
Tonstant Weader
Nov 04, 2010 Tonstant Weader rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The saddest and most disturbing of Frank Tallis' series, The Lieberman Papers that chronicle the crime-solving adventures of Max Lieberman, the psychologist who serves as a police consultant for his friend Oskar Rheinhardt.

This story takes place in a boys school where students are programmed with the "wisdom" of Nietzsche just a bit too enthusiastically. Taking his work as not just justification, but almost a demand for bullying, some students are inflicting a reign of terror on the outcasts, t
Another (#3 ) in the Liberman Papers series, of which I have learned that there are 6. This all are set in the last days of Imperial Vienna which is coming to a close. the arts, the military ideals, the sciences, and very set patterns of life are very strongly a part of the fabric. This one concentrates on the military academies, considered ideal schooling for young man who are set to go places by many people of the time. But brutality also exists, and the detective is sent to investigate what b ...more
I finished this book. Once again there was a big twist in the plot. Trezka, a Hungarian violinist was a (view spoiler)
I was really shocked. The way Liebermann discovers this fact is amazing. I love Liebermann and his conjectures.
Liebermann continues to fight his feelings for Amelia. The man who is seen with Amelia by Max is not her lover, as Max thought but he is in fact her half brother. (another shocking twist)

I would like to have seen the author explore
Apr 17, 2012 Les rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
There was a kernal of a good story in there somewhere, a kind of harder-edged Tom Brown's Schooldays with bullying and brutality towards the younger and outcast pupils. Whether it was the author's idea inject authenticity by adding regular refrences to viennese confectionary, the popular classical of the time or psychotherapy theories of that period or whether it was a conceit to display his depth of knowledge on those those subjects, I don't know. But the frequent references to them killed off ...more
Jan 27, 2015 Joanne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love the way Tallis integrates descriptions of the cultural and political life in Vienna, as well as the inclusion of the growing knowledge of psychoanalysis within his mysteries, and Lieberman is a great character to follow through the series.
Emmett Hoops
Jan 12, 2015 Emmett Hoops rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book, the third in a series in which each book can be read independently, is absolutely riveting. There are so many shining stars in Tallis's writing -- you certainly will find yourself reading parts to anyone who will hear you.
Sep 11, 2013 Silverblue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Opened the book and saw the name Lieberman, put down the book....hate that name for some reason! Then, out of things to read I pick it up, skipping the name, and what a slick book. Found it to be a well written, with a lots of twists. The story was vivid and doesn't hurt it's written by the subject matter expert either, enjoyed it a lot. A slick book! However, when I read pages 356-359, where the sommer character starts talking/explaining got lost. I had to read that part few times and still cou ...more
May 26, 2010 Emily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
This may have the blandest title of the Liebermann Papers books so far, but it represents a leap forward in the author's plotting. The elegant styling and relevant themes of the previous books are here combined with a more ambitious, less outlandish, multi-stranded story. The themes involve jealousy and suspicion, and part of the story takes place at a creepy military school. There's also some further development of Rheinhardt's department, with his disagreeable colleagues, and a mysterious love ...more
Carolyn Crocker
Mar 18, 2010 Carolyn Crocker rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This mystery is the third in an excellent series set in early 20th century Vienna. Young psychoanalyst Max Liebermann is Freud's student, a talented musician, a middling fencer, a coffeehouse regular, and best friend of a police detective, Oskar Rheinhardt. The hub of culture, science, political ferment, 1903 Vienna is itself a character in these books. It is the stage on which the personal, intellectual, and historical intersect with well-plotted solutions to puzzling crimes. Each volume illumi ...more
Dalton Adams
Sep 08, 2014 Dalton Adams rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this one a lot, better than Death in Vienna. I quite like Tallis's books, but, I'm always a sucker for anything about abnormal psychology!
Still interesting if somewhat intricate this time around. And darker. The dark clouds of intolerance, of xenophobia are gathering. Still, Tallis paints a sumptuous picture of Vienna at the turn of the 20e century.

This one is more focused on philosophy and music than visual art. There is quite of bit of Nietzsche in this one.

The whole sub-plot of possible conspiracy, terrorists and well... spies is played in sourdine while the main plot of a young student found dead at a military school takes t
Dec 27, 2015 Cynthia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Breathtakingly involving and satisfying, like all the Liebermann Papers. On to book 4!
Dec 30, 2010 Elisabeth rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michael Funck
Good Max Liebermann mystery.
Jun 17, 2009 Vivienne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This is such a good series combining strong plot, effective characterisations and such a well-realised period setting. Tallis' writes well and carries the story along at a good pace. He always takes time to explain the psychoanalytic theory and practices in clear language.

This was slightly different to the previous two in not having such an esoteric plot (spiritualism and secret societies) though did involve international espionage and the closed world of a military academy.
Jeremy Hurd-McKenney
Equal parts stuffy and scandalous, Tallis' turn-of-the-century Vienna mysteries are always amusing and thought-provoking. The brilliant, yet insufferable, Max Liebermann is a wonderful character, and detective Oskar Reinhardt is the perfect Watson to Liebermann's Holmes.

This novel is full of little gimmicks, some successful (the bleak military school), some not as successful (I hate the use of Freud as a character), but overall a pleasant reading experience.
Jan 08, 2011 Jo rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
The 'terrible secret' wasn't all that terrible - not the most gripping story I've ever read and had to make myself persevere in the middle, but it did improve. Made me feel cold and a bit depressed - don't know if it was the weather in the book or in the real world (unusually cold and coming up the christmas), but won't be looking for more books by this author. In the library.
Apr 19, 2010 Rebecca rated it liked it
Once again, Frank Tallis brings to life Belle Époque Vienna (most of all its scrumptious pastries), but the solutions to the intertwined mysteries in Fatal Lies were unsatisfactory simply because each was so painfully obvious from the beginning. It isn't enough to have lavish attention to detail and atmosphere in this genre; you also need a clever and challenging plot.
Jan 23, 2012 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The third in Tallis' Vienna detective series, this mystery centers on the goings-on at an Austrian military school in the wake of the death of a student. Contains the rich atmosphere of Tallis' other works, as well as the use of psychoanalysis to solve the mystery. This book delves more in to the political and philosophical stirrings in the late Habsburg Empire.
Jul 26, 2009 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The author does a good job of painting a picture of life in Vienna, Austria in 1908. He also keeps you guessing. He gives delicious descriptions of pastries that made Vienna famous. Behind the solving of the mystery lies the question he asks, "What are the factors that cause ordinary people to identify with brutal belief systems?" A good read.
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Goodreads Librari...: inaccurate title and data 2 20 Feb 06, 2015 08:43AM  
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Aka F.R. Tallis.

Dr. Frank Tallis is a writer and clinical psychologist. He has held lecturing posts in clinical psychology and neuroscience at the Institute of Psychiatry and King's College, London. He has written self help manuals (How to Stop Worrying, Understanding Obsessions and Compulsions) non-fiction for the general reader (Changing Minds, Hidden Minds, Love Sick), academic text books and o
More about Frank Tallis...

Other Books in the Series

Liebermann Papers (6 books)
  • A Death in Vienna (Liebermann Papers, #1)
  • Vienna Blood (Liebermann Papers, #2)
  • Darkness Rising (Liebermann Papers, #4)
  • Deadly Communion (Liebermann Papers, #5)
  • Death and the Maiden  (Liebermann Papers, #6)

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