Tuesday, 7 May 2019

The Pale-Faced Lie by David Crow + #Giveaway

The Pale-Faced Lie: A True Story by David Crow

Category: Adult Non-Fiction, 344 pages
Genre: Memoir
Publisher: Sandra Jonas Publishing House
Release date: May 7, 2019
Tour dates: May 6 to 17, 2019
Content Rating: PG-13 + Mature subject matter of abusive parenting. No explicit pornographic sex or excessive profanity.

One of my 2019 New Release Challenge reads

Growing up on the Navajo Indian Reservation, David Crow and his three siblings idolized their dad. Tall, strong, smart, and brave, the self-taught Cherokee regaled his family with stories of his World War II feats. But as time passed, David discovered the other side of Thurston Crow, the ex-con with his own code of ethics that justified cruelty, violence, lies—even murder.

A shrewd con artist with a genius IQ, Thurston intimidated David with beatings to coerce him into doing his criminal bidding. David’s mom, too mentally ill to care for her children, couldn’t protect him. One day, Thurston packed up the house and took the kids, leaving her with nothing. Soon he remarried, and David learned that his stepmother was just as vicious and abusive as his father.

Through sheer determination, and with the help of a few angels along the way, David managed to get into college and achieve professional success. When he finally found the courage to stop helping his father with his criminal activities, he unwittingly triggered a plot of revenge that would force him into a showdown with Thurston Crow. With lives at stake, including his own, David would have only twenty-four hours to outsmart his father—the brilliant, psychotic man who bragged that the three years he spent in the notorious San Quentin State Prison had been the easiest time of his life.

The Pale-Faced Lie is a searing, raw, palpable memoir that reminds us what an important role our parents play in our lives. Most of all, it’s an inspirational story about the power of forgiveness and the ability of the human spirit to rise above adversity, no matter the cost.

The Pale-Faced Lie is a harrowing memoir of childhood abuse which includes several scenes of extreme violence. At times I was almost unable to keep on reading because what David and his brother endured was so upsetting. I would like to be able to believe that child protection services have improved considerably since David's experience in the 1960s, but sadly I know that there are still cases where children are forced to suffer in solence.

As an adult, David has penned an amazing and very readable memoir. I appreciated the contrasts between his child's eye understanding of his family's circumstances and his view from so many decades later. That his child self readily took on so much of the blame for his dysfunctional parents is heartbreaking. I felt strongly for his elder sister who lost most of her childhood to perform the role of surrogate mother to her three siblings. David's descriptions of living conditions on the Navajo reservations are just as sobering as those of his home life. How on earth can it be considered acceptable to reduce whole communities to such a degrading existence?

At times The Pale-Faced Lie reads like a thriller, rather than a memoir. David has a great sense of a good story and knows just how to pace a narrative. I would have liked to learn information like what brought about his father's Cherokee claims, but overall this shockingly vivid memoir is a memorable read.

Praise for The Pale-Faced Lie:

“[Crow] has considerable wisdom to impart, and an unexpected ending that will linger in memory. I promise that you've never read a book quite like this one."

—Jeff Guinn, New York Times bestselling author

“…A memoir of an extraordinary life that is lifted by extraordinary storytelling….It is emotionally engaging, consistently entertaining, and nearly impossible to put down.”
​—James Anderson, author of The Never-Open Desert Diner and Lullaby Road

“Heartbreaking and gut-wrenchingly honest. Anyone with a troubled childhood should read The Pale-Faced Lie. David Crow’s book is proof that hope rises from the ashes.”
—Chris Enss, New York Times best-selling author

To read further reviews, please visit David Crow's page on iRead Book Tours.

Meet the Author: ​

​David Crow spent his early years on the Navajo Indian Reservation in Arizona and New Mexico. Through grit, resilience, and a thirst for learning, he managed to escape his abusive childhood, graduate from college, and build a successful lobbyist business in Washington. Today, David is a sought-after speaker, giving talks to various businesses and trade organizations around the world.

Throughout the years, he has mentored over 200 college interns, performed pro bono service for the charitable organization Save the Children, and participated in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. An advocate for women, he will donate 10 percent of his book royalties to Barrett House, a homeless shelter for women in Albuquerque. David and his wife, Patty, live in the suburbs of DC.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ LinkedIn

Enter the Giveaway!
Win a print copy of The Pale-Faced Lie 
(10 winners total / open to USA only)
Ends May 25, 2019

Search Lit Flits for more:
Books by David Crow / Biography and memoir / Books from America


  1. Just released today, so I can wait to get one for summer reading.

    1. It's well worth the read although the subject matter is emotionally hard going

  2. Good grief that sounds like a hard read. I can't imagine writing about having to live such a hard life.

    1. I hope David Crow found it carthartic to write this memoir. It's certainly a powerful story

  3. I used to read a lot of abuse memoirs but in the end I got too depressed at the content.

    1. I only read them infrequently for exactly that reason