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Once Upon a Lie (Alistair Fitzjohn, #3)
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Once Upon a Lie

(Alistair Fitzjohn #3)

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3.92  ·  Rating details ·  888 ratings  ·  75 reviews
Little did businessman and entrepreneur Michael Rossi know that the telephone call he answered on that fateful Friday would be the catalyst for his death and the subsequent recovery of his body from the waters of Sydney Harbour the following morning.
Recalled from leave to take on the case, Detective Chief Inspector Fitzjohn confronts the first of many puzzles: how Rossi sp
...more
Kindle Edition, First Edition, 246 pages
Published April 2nd 2013 by Amazon Digital Services
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Popular Answered Questions
Jill Hi Brenda,
It's lovely to hear from you.
Yes, I'm working on the 4th Fitzjohn mystery, LANE'S END, at the moment. It's about to be sent off to my editor…more
Hi Brenda,
It's lovely to hear from you.
Yes, I'm working on the 4th Fitzjohn mystery, LANE'S END, at the moment. It's about to be sent off to my editor and I hope to have it published by September/October.
I'd also like to thank you for your encouraging reviews. They're very appreciated.
Kindest Regards
Jill Paterson(less)
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Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.92  · 
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Sharon
After spending the last few weeks in London, Detective Chief Inspector Alistair Fitzjohn has been called back to work. Fitzjohn went back to London to revisit places he and his late wife, Edith visited in their younger years.

The case Fitzjohn was required to go on was the suspicious death of Michael Rossi, who was found at Rushcutters Bay by his business partner, Nigel Prentice. Michael and Nigel had worked alongside one another in Rossi & Prentice Yachting Electronics since 2007. Nigel was hav
...more
Phrynne
Dec 30, 2014 rated it liked it
A light, enjoyable read. A bit predictable and there were quite a few editorial errors that detracted from it for me. I liked the main character although he was very, very similar to Adam Dalgleish without being quite as good. In all I enjoyed it as a quick read and may well try some more books from this series.
Brenda
May 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Brenda by: Vicki Tyley
Detective Chief Inspector Alastair Fitzjohn had been called back from leave; he’d been in London for a good while and felt relaxed and refreshed. Though nothing could make up for the death of his beloved Edith, coming back to tend to her orchids in their glasshouse at the rear of his cottage gave him a measure of peace while putting the day to day problems of the surrounding world away for awhile.

Meeting up with his nemesis Chief Superintendent Grieg had a negative effect until he learned he wa
...more
Sharon Michael
I do enjoy a police procedural/mystery with a competent, reliable main character who is not an alcoholic, wallowing in depression or tangled in a dysfunctional love affair.

Characters are well developed, with just enough detail of family life outside their work to give them a well rounded personality.

Two plot lines which eventually merge, quite believably and I particularly liked the art gallery/ artwork involvement.

Very readable mystery with a touch of cozy/ classic English mystery feel to it.
Odette
What a pleasant find as I enjoyed this mystery and the characters very much. There was complexity, but not at all confusisng, with a number of suspects and not just one crime. I liked the style of writing, without being too violent or macabre. I also liked the unfolding stories and development of the main characters. This book kept me engrossed, as I wanted to keep reading it, and the plot had me guessing right to the end. I am now interested in reading the two previous books about Fitzjohn, and ...more
Patricia Ibarra
May 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
The entrepreneur, owner of a vineyard in Australia, was murdered under mysterious circumstances, but it is gradually unveiled how complicated his family life was. Retired Detective Chief Inspector Fitzjohn and was called to help solve this case, a welcome invitation to stop mourning the loss of his orchid-lover wife. Interesting, well told story, and very easy to follow. It reminded me of Agatha Christie's style. The virtue of the author is that each time she introduces a new character, you can' ...more
Jan
Jul 17, 2015 rated it liked it
I am enjoying these Fitzjohn mysteries. This particular book had quite a few interrelated characters and it was just a touch challenging to keep them all straight. But again, I enjoy reading how Detective Chief Inspector Fitzjohn works methodically to bring about justice. He still reminds me of a Columbo type character, bumbling along...but he's more on top of it than everyone thinks. In this book he solves not one, but two murders. A good summer read. ...more
Harry Lane
Jul 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Paterson writes a consistently good police procedural. Her characters lives interweave as the plot develops in a way that adds interest. In this installment, the case has a number of possible suspects, and Fitzjohn has a number of challenges to tease out the information needed to identify the guilty party.
Carl
May 24, 2017 rated it liked it
"Once Upon a Lie" is the third - and sadly weakest - entry in Jill Paterson's Inspector Fitzjohn mystery series. Although "Once Upon a Lie" is still a good read, it is not as good or strong as the first two were. Her first Fitzjohn mystery, "The Celtic Dagger," was a very well crafted, although the good Inspector had essentially a more minor role. Fitzjohn certainly was an interesting and appealing character, which I am sure has led to this series. Regardless, "Once Upon a Lie" was good, and as ...more
Ron Mac
Sep 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
~A very proper detective novel
~There are well over 300 reviews of this book, so there is not much new that I can say. However, I do want to get my 5-Star rating counted.
~This is a proper story…and by that, I mean there is always time for tea, Detective Chief Inspector Fitzjohn did not jump to conclusions, rather he followed a methodical style of investigation…tracking leads and questioning suspects (often catching them in their lie). Unlike a story which takes place in the U.S.A., the police did
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M
Jul 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
This Author Needs an Editor. Badly.

2.5 stars

The murder mystery is cleverly plotted with two interesting storylines. However, the police procedural sections were annoying, because titles of rank are used each time a character is mentioned. As a reader of police procedurals, I won’t forget the protagonist’s name and rank. Be warned: there are more than 25 characters in this shortish book, and many had same/similar surnames.

This was a difficult book for me to get through, because of so many punc
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Opal Sibley
Nov 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Complicated characters

Although at times I felt like giving up, I stayed til the end. The interaction of the different characters made it necessary to be alert to their relationships both professional and personal. It was a well written book and I enjoyed the way the mystery was solved.
Judi Keenum
May 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Good Tory

A lot of characters, some with similar names. Makes keeping track of everything sort of difficult. It got a bit dragged out at times and I felt like the author was trying to fill space with unnecessary information, only to make it harder to follow the thread.
Susan
Apr 21, 2019 rated it liked it
When businessman Michael Rossi's body is discovered in Sydney Harbour Fitzjohn is brought in to lead the investigation. What may seem at first a straightforward case becomes complicated .
An enjoyable mystery
...more
Donna Arthur
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Great book

All of the characters were realistic and the storyline has multiple twists and turns. Hard to put down. I haven't read the whole series but now I shall. I write mysteries and read the genre also. Very impressive.
...more
N Fuller
Feb 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Great mystery read

The central characters are becoming well liked acquaintances. The stories are interesting and have some surprises. I look forward to reading the next book in the series
Jean Holtof
Jan 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing
An enjoyable whodunit with Detective Chief Inspector Fitzjohn, who reminds me a lot of Morse from the British television series, as he investigates the death of Michael Rossi. A complex plot with lots of interesting characters, I liked the pacing in the story and the wit and dry humor.
Lin J.
May 04, 2017 rated it did not like it
it's like the outline of a book, boring writing and nothing spectacular about the story. ...more
Laura
May 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
I got in to this really quickly and wanted to keep reading to find out the next development in the story. Would recommend and would read more by this author in the future.
Donna Foston
Jan 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Quick, light read. Written mostly from the detective’s perspective, so a lot of “we interviewed this person, then we collected this evidence.”
Diane Heath
Mar 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, kindle
This book is the best one yet in this series thus far. Fitzjohn solves two murders and loses a greenhouse.
patty ofarrell
Mar 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great book

Really a great book. I love the detail in this book, the way the author writes and it kept me guessing throughout. I'll definitely read more of her books!
...more
Patricia Manship
Aug 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Mysteries

I just love these books ,great stories !!!! Seeing the same characters is like looking in on someone's family !
...more
Janine
Mar 07, 2019 rated it liked it
A quick and enjoyable read with lots of twists.
Sandra
Jul 17, 2019 rated it it was ok
Long, drawn out.
Liz Etnyre
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Enjoying this series. Particularly glad we've put aside the confused parentage issue of books 1 and 2! Can easily stand alone, but best read in order. ...more
Jean Hall
Aug 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book I have read in this series and I totally enjoyed it. Good story line and kept my interest throughout.
Mary
May 03, 2020 rated it liked it
This was a pleasant read. The writing and the plot were a huge improvement over the first , A Celtic Dagger, although still a little flat. I liked Fitzroy and Betts.
Nancy
May 24, 2020 rated it it was ok
Too many characters, too many subplots...
Margaret Hier
Feb 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Orchids require care

Inspector Fitzjohn's life and his interaction with art, wine, and yachts and his orchids continue to weave a delightful story.
...more
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108 followers
Jill Paterson is best known for her popular Fitzjohn Mystery Series. Set in the city of Sydney and its environs, it features DCI Alistair Fitzjohn. A police officer of the old guard, Fitzjohn's methodical, painstaking methods are viewed by some as archaic. Nevertheless, over the years, they have brought him success as well as the respect of all but one of his colleagues; Chief Superintendent Grieg ...more

Other books in the series

Alistair Fitzjohn (8 books)
  • The Celtic Dagger (Alistair Fitzjohn, #1)
  • Murder at the Rocks (Alistair Fitzjohn, #2)
  • Lane's End (Alistair Fitzjohn, #4)
  • Deadly Investment (Alistair Fitzjohn, #5)
  • Poisoned Palette (Alistair Fitzjohn, #6)
  • The Fourth String (Alistair Fitzjohn, #7)
  • Rose Scented Murder (Alistair Fitzjohn #8)

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