Written by Anne Corbitt

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The music was moving, the moment a measure away, and when the man pointed to him, the time had come.






North Oak



After school one day, custodian Oliver Nix investigates a strange sound coming from the boys’ locker room. What he finds rocks this suburban Atlanta community.

Langley, a sophomore, claims she was forced, but Kevin, the unlikely accused, insists on his innocence while plotting his path out of town. His mother Grace defends her son despite making a similar accusation twenty years before. Eleanor, Oliver’s daughter, tries to reconcile her loyalty to best friend Langley with her unrequited love for Kevin.

Rules for Lying follows these five characters through a police investigation that makes them question their memories, allegiances, and actions, all while hiding secrets of their own.

Who is lying? What really happened? Will anything ever be the same again?


Read the Book

In Stores September 2016


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About the Author


Anne Corbitt

Atlanta, Georgia

Anne Corbitt received her MFA in Fiction from the University of Mississippi on the John and Renée Grisham Fellowship. Her work has appeared in One Story, The Greensboro Review, Fifth Wednesday, Fourth River, and others. She lives in Atlanta with her dog Ramona and teaches writing at Kennesaw State University.

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Tom Franklin


“Anne Corbitt has written a novel that crackles with suspense and energy, that shows how one event can knock an entire community off its wheels. The real beauty of this book, though, is that everyone is complicit, no one let off the hook, and as Corbitt plumbs deeper and deeper into the psyches of her wonderfully drawn characters, we feel ourselves pulled down with them in a living nightmare. To put it bluntly, I haven’t turned pages this fast in a while. You should read this book. Now, today."

Drew Perry

author of "Kids These Days"

“Somewhere between the truth and those things we might never know lies Anne Corbitt’s fierce, jazzed-up novel, Rules for Lying. Leaping from voice to pitch-perfect voice, Corbitt’s story of a high-school community trying to make sense of a single moment of either passion or violence becomes much more than a he-said, she-said: it chases instead the ways one life can unravel another. Exquisitely plotted, endlessly surprising, and so real it hurts, Rules for Lying speaks to the darkest—and then most hopeful—places inside us all.”

M.O. Walsh

New York Times bestselling author of "My Sunshine Away"

“Anne Corbitt’s impressive debut novel is as much a mystery as it is a cautionary tale. Teenagers and adults alike; be warned. There is no such thing as a harmless lie and there is no un-saying what has already been said. This book is quick and dramatic, timely and tragic. It should be required reading for anyone who thinks they won’t be found out.”


The Soundtrack

Listen to the "Rules for Lying" soundtrack.