EDGAR AWARD FINALIST • A private investigator revisits the case that has haunted her for decades and sets out on a deeply personal quest to sort truth from lies.
 
CLUE AWARD FINALIST • “[A] haunting memoir, which also unfolds as a gripping true-crime narrative . . . This is a powerful, unsettling story, told with bracing honesty and skill.”—The Washington Post

A New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice • One of Marie Claire’s Ten Best True Crime Books of the Year


Ellen McGarrahan was a young journalist for The Miami Herald in 1990 when she witnessed the botched execution of convicted killer Jesse Tafero: flames and smoke and three jolts of the electric chair. When evidence later emerged casting doubt on Tafero’s guilt, McGarrahan found herself haunted by his fiery death. Had she witnessed the execution of an innocent man? 

 
Decades later, McGarrahan, now a successful private investigator, is still gripped by the mystery and infamy of the Tafero case, and decides she must investigate it herself. Her quest will take her around the world and deep into the harrowing heart of obsession, and as questions of guilt and innocence become more complex, McGarrahan discovers she is not alone in her need for closure. For whenever a human life is taken by violence, the reckoning is long and difficult for all.
  A rare and vivid account of a private investigator’s real life and a classic true-crime tale, Two Truths and a Lie is ultimately a profound meditation on truth, grief, complicity, and justice.
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