Father Of Lies

Ifu Ibekwe

About the Author

Ann Turner is an American poet and a historical fiction children's writer. She was born on December 10, 1945 "just after World War II in Northampton, Massachusetts, and grew up in what we call a "print-rich" atmosphere, surrounded by books." (Ann). Her father ran his own printing shop and her mother was an artist. Ann Turner attended Bates college in Maine in the 1960's and also studied abroad in oxford university which fueled her love of literature. Ann Turner has been writing since she was 8 years old. Her first book was a nonfiction suggested by her mother. Ann Turner has 2 children, one a senior in High school and the other in graduate school. Ann Turner is also a "member of the society of Children's Book Writers and illustrators." (Encyclopedia). Ann Turner gets her inspiration to write books from her unique way of molding history from boring facts into stupendous and intriguing works. In her Harper Collins' interview she reveals her interest in the Salem periods. She exemplified her reason for writing the book Father of Lies, stating that she wanted to "stretch and tell the story of the Salem Witch Trials from the unique and often disturbing viewpoint of a young girl suffering from bipolar disorder, a condition that was not yet understood in the 17th century." (Eduplace). Some of Ann Turner's other historical works include "A hunter comes Home and Rosemary's Witch" (Turner 247)
Big image

Plot Overview

In the winter of "1692 in the village of Salem, Massachusetts."(Good). Fourteen-year-old Lidda Johnson is always feeling different from everyone else in her strict Puritan village. She yearns to be free, "To dance and sing and and live."( Turner 12). She also has hallucinations and hears a sinister voice inside her, a voice that calls himself Lucian. She doesn't understand why this is happening to her and is afraid to tell anyone. Her family has always thought her a bit odd, and as her behavior becomes stranger, she struggles to hide it from them. In her village many young girls are being falsely accused of witchcraft and only she possesses the ability to seek out the real witches and liberate the accused. With this supernatural ability of Lucian's voice in her head, she tries to expose the real witches without be condemned as one herself. Lidda struggles between succumbing to Lucian's abuse and acknowledging the fact that "Lucian's voice is just apart of her bipolar disorder." (Books).

As Lidda starts to realize Lucian's desires to control her into his will, she reverts to her sanguinity and optimism to set her. Lidda starts shutting Lucian out of her head, and eventually gains enough will power to dispell his sinister voice from her body once and for all. As the story concludes, the village people of Salem infer that Lidda's bipolar disorder is a curse from the devil. They are quick to condemn her as witch regardless of her countless times to expose the real witches and purify Salem. She quickly flees into the woods where she realizes that she had Will power all along. With this empowering her, she finds the courage to escape Salem once and for all. As Lidda celebrates her new found freedom, she reminisces of her baby brother and family. She soon later discovers that Lucian was just a fragment of her bipolar disorder, and realizes that she was free all along.

Big image


The theme of Father of lies is evil exploiting innocence. This is represented through how Lucian is simply able to take advantage of Lidda's purity and innocence. With Lidda being very naive and childlike, she makes a very susceptible victim to Lucian's abusive Control and dominion. With Lucian being a sinister character, his desires to feed off Lidda's weak mind are fulfilled, through manipulation and deceit.

Lidda's naive innocence also leads her to be indecisive about her feelings towards Lucian. Lidda "could not decide if she felt reassured by his comments or Unnerved, but she rather thought she Welcomed Lucian's voice, even when it seemed a bit threatening." (Turner 131). This excerpt from the book supports how threatened and subdued Lidda feels from Lucian's presence. Lucian's controlling threatening character attempts to force his will on Lidda, stating "Because I have other plans for you and if you tell I will abandon You to your fate. To emphasize his words Lidda felt a shock through her whole body." (Turner 73) This excerpt supports the theme of evil exploiting innocence by representing how Lucian uses fear as a master method of his domination to control Lidda's will. This theme of evil exploiting innocence is still very present in our society. We as humans like to benefit off the naive people who willingly believes. We as humans like taking advantage of the people who easily believe without any revolt. We as humans exploit the weak minded and naive, using their ignorance of knowledge as personal gain. Society likes to benefit off the innocent and naive. This has been proven through many events in history such as slavery, segregation, and the "Indian Removal Act in 1830" (loc).

All these event had one thing in common, society was benefiting and exploiting the ignorance and innocence of another group. The theme of evil exploiting innocence is also displayed in modern society through factor of age. Many young naive girls and boys are manipulated into early sex and drugs, simply because they thought they were in love. With so many teens being naive and gullible, it's easy for anybody to take advantage of them and lead them into doing things that would never do. The theme of evil exploiting innocence is still strongly present in modern society through these events and scenarios.

Major Characters Analyzed

Lidda is the protagonist in the book father of lies. She is a "14 year old girl"(Turner 11) living in Salem. She is portrayed as a naive and innocent girl. Lidda is very optimistic and she has a sanguine demeanor. Though she can be very childish in her imagination through the way her "imagination is like a runaway horse," (Turner 8) that can't be controlled, she still strives to progress in her character. Lidda has a very pure and innocent mind, her purity is exemplified in this excerpt as "breast. Lidda thought. I am not allowed to use that word. Breast, unless it refers to the breasts of wild beasts in the Bible, if it is in the Bible it is alright." (Turner 22). Lidda is also weak willed and gullible. She is very easy to succumb and manipulate. Lidda also suffers from a bi polar disorder and she behaves very strange and unusual. This makes her a subject of question in the Salem village.

Lucian is the antagonist of the story. He starts out portraying to be a sinister voice inside of Lidda's head. He is a very controlling and abusive character. He first gets a grip on Lidda by coaxing her by telling her "I am not a nightmare Lidda, and I am far more than a dream." (Turner 3). These first words to Lidda are the beginning of his dominion over her mind. Lucian is also very manipulative in the way he tries to make Lidda believe that his will is more effective than her own. As shown in this excerpt "Because I have other plans for you and if you tell I will abandon You to your fate. To emphasize his words Lidda felt a shock through her whole body." (Turner 73), Lucian desire to enforce his will on Lidda prevails through the way he uses fear as method of manipulation. Lucian is also a very pitiful and disconsolate character. His pitiful and vile words "It is lonely here. I yearn for warmth, to be in a living being." (Turner 4), presents his desire for life, and how he desires to feed off the purity of Lidda. Lucian is also deceitful. He takes advantage of Lidda's gullibility and promises her false and trivial things.

He glitters Lidda's generality with false promises and lies, stating "Do not forget delight, girl. I'm full of delights. I will show them to you and you have a life, a real life. Not a pinched, squeezed in excuse for a life. I will always be here to talk to, unlike your other friends." (Turner 89). Lucian sinister and manipulative character feeds off Lidda's innocence and purity.

Historical Connection

The history connection from this book is the phenomenon of the Salem Witch trials, and the enormous ignorance that the church had about secular knowledge in this time period. The infamous Salem witch trials took place "during the spring of 1692, after a group of young girls in Salem Village, Massachusetts, claimed to be possessed by the devil and accused several local women of witchcraft. As a wave of hysteria spread throughout colonial Massachusetts, a special court convened in Salem to hear the cases." (History). This book accurately portrayed the struggle that many young girls in Salem had to face. The effect of the Salem history on this book was that it took the Salem witch trials and produced a possible scenario of any Salem girl being in Lidda's position, with a "bipolar disorder" (Turner 246) being misunderstood as a form of witchcraft. This book accurately portrayed the ignorance of knowledge that many people in Salem possessed. Young girls were hung for inaccurate and unjust accusations, without the proper knowledge of reasoning and research. One thing that society has learned from the Salem Witch Trials is that secularism provided knowledge and ceases ignorance. That is one thing that society during the Salem period failed to realize. People believed that to go against the church and to access worldly knowledge was a grave sin, when in fact, worldly knowledge gave logical answers to the events that were assumed as witchcraft.
History Channel: Salem Witch Trials

Symbols and Motifs

Lucian's character represents the symbol of evil in the book father of lies. The first factor that supports this theory is his name. The name Lucian is similar to the name Lucifer, which is the name of the fallen angel, the Devil. The author intentionally made this similarity evident, so we can see how the symbol of evil runs through the book. Another factor that supports this theory is how Lidda describes Lucian's monstrous look. This excerpt states that"The grotesque creature was looking at her. It's head turned with the swirl of dark long hair and silver Eyes gleaming in the moonlight like small stars. It seemed to be calling to her" (Turner 2). This excerpt portrays Lucian's physical demeanor and his appearance. This characterization of Lucian supports the theory that he is infused with evil through his looks and his character.

Another symbol represented in this book is the rope that is used to hang the accused witches. The rope represents ignorance. People were hung unreasonably, due to the lack of logical knowledge and reasoning. This continued through the summer of 1692 where "nineteen men and women, all having been convicted of witchcraft, were carted to Gallows Hill, a barren slope near Salem Village, for hanging." (Law2).

Important Quotations Explained

At this point in the book, Lucian is expressing desires for life towards Lidda. He reveals his true plans to feed off of Lidda. Lucian states that "it is lonely here. I yearn for warmth. to be in a living thing" (Turner 4). This quote is significant, because it is when Lucian first exposes his evil plans of manifesting in Lidda.

At this point in the book, Lidda is talking to herself, and cramming the words that the church had taught her over in her head. She repeatedly exclaims thoughtfully, "breast... I am not allowed to use that word. Breast, unless it refers to the breasts of wild beasts in the Bible, if it is in the Bible it is alright." (Turner 22). This quote is significant because it displays Lidda's pure mind and innocent mind, and how she makes a susceptible target to Lucian's sinister schemes.

At this point Lidda is contemplating fleeing Salem and being free, but Lucian undermines her plan by his threatening statement. He tries to scare her by telling her that "They will come for you.. Come later they will and catch you like a wild animal in the woods. They will carry you up to the tree and string you up besides goody Bishop...string you up." (Turner 229). This quote is significant because it displays the main theme of how Lucian manipulates Lidda through the fear and threats.


About the Author

1. Turner, Ann W. "Ann Warren Turner About Me." Annwturner. Annwturner, 6 Apr. 2013. Web. 05 Mar. 2015 <http://www.annwturner.com/bio>.

2. "Turner, Ann 1945- (Ann Warren Turner)." Encyclopedia.com. Ed. Ency "Turner, Ann 1945- (Ann Warren Turner)." Something About the Author. 2008. HighBeam Research, 01 Jan. 2008. Web. 05 Mar. 2015. <http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/Ann_Turner.aspx>.

3. Turner, Ann W. "Meet the Author." Houghton Mifflin Reading: Meet Ann Turner. Houghton, 3 Mar. 2011. Web. 05 Mar. 2015. <http://www.eduplace.com/kids/hmr/mtai/turner.html>.

4. (Turner 247) Turner, Ann Warren. About Ann Turner. Father of Lies. N/A ed. Vol. N/A. New York: HarperTeen, 2011. 247. Print. N/A.

Plot Overview

1. Turner, Ann W. "Setting." Goodreads. Harper Teen, 8 Feb. 2011. Web. 4 Mar. 2015. <http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/8444936-father-of-lies>.

2. (Turner 12) Turner, Ann Warren. Father of Lies. N/A ed. Vol. N/A. New York: HarperTeen, 2011. Print. N/A.

3. Turner, Ann W. "Books At Midnight: Review: Father of Lies by Ann Warren Turner." Books At Midnight: Review: Father of Lies by Ann Warren Turner. Harper Teen, 8 Feb. 2011. Web. 06 Mar. 2015. <http://booksatmidnight.blogspot.com/2011/02/review-father-of-lies-by-ann-warren.html>.


1."Primary Documents in American History." Indian Removal Act: (Virtual Programs & Services, Library of Congress). Ed. Lib O. Congress. Liberty of Congress, 24 Sept. 2014. Web. 11 Feb. 2015. <http://www.loc.gov/rr/program/bib/ourdocs/Indian.html>.

2. (Turner 73) Turner, Ann Warren. Page 73. Father of Lies. N ed. Vol. N. New York: HarperTeen, 2011. 73. Print. N.

3. (Turner 231) Turner, Ann W. Page 231. Father of Lies. N ed. Vol. N. N.p.: n.p., n.d. 231. Print. N.

Major Characters Analyzed

(Turner 11) Father of lies, <Ann Turner> 11

(Turner 8) Father of lies, <Ann Turner> 8

(Turner 22) Father of lies, <Ann Turner> 22

(Turner 3) Father of lies, <Ann Turner> 3

(Turner 73) Father of lies, <Ann Turner> 73

(Turner 4) Father of lies, <Ann Turner> 4

(Turner 89) Father of lies, <Ann Turner> 89

Historical connection

1. "Salem Witch Trials." History.com. A&E Television Networks, 3 Apr. 2011. Web. 11 Feb. 2015. <http://www.history.com/topics/salem-witch-trials>.

2. (Turner 246) Father of lies <Ann Turner > 246

Symbols and motifs

1. (Turner 2) Father of lies <Ann Turner> 2

2. "The Salem Witchcraft Trials of 1692." The Salem Witchcraft Trials of 1692. Umkc, n.d. Web. 4 Mar. 2015 <http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/salem/salem.htm>.

Important quotation

1. (Turner 4) Father of lies <Ann Turner> 4

2. (Turner 229)Father of lies <Ann Turner> 229

3. (Turner 22) Father of lies <Ann Turner> 22


1. http://www.google.com/url?q=http://www.annwturner.com/&sa=U&ei=XHH6VOehJsH3yQTB4YBo&ved=0CBYQ9QEwAA&usg=AFQjCNG9zwK2nvaF1LJqQgWwO-sp2Tc2aw

2. http://www.google.com/url?q=http://www.amazon.com/Ann-Warren-Turner/e/B001IXMBS2&sa=U&ei=XHH6VOehJsH3yQTB4YBo&ved=0CBwQ9QEwAw&usg=AFQjCNHjZcL7ed4TYVRLEMBQv9017Us5XQ