Title: One of Us is Lying
Author: Karen M. McManus
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Contemporary
Release Date: May 30th, 2017
Goodreads Summary: One of Us Is Lying is the story of what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide.
Pay close attention and you might solve this.
On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention.
Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.
Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.
Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.
Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.
And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High’s notorious gossip app.
Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention Simon’s dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn’t an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he’d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who’s still on the loose?
Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them.
As you can tell by the summary, this book has a Breakfast Club and Gossip Girl vibe. It is perfect if you’re looking for your summer contemporary, but you don’t just want a love story, you want something much different. A book set in our real world, so we don’t have to use too much of our sun-fried brains to imagine anything fantastical, and includes very fleshed-out characters.
The writing style kind of takes a while to grow on you. At first, I felt it was a bit fanfiction-y, because it bothered me a little how she tried to enunciate Coopers accent or tiny things like that. But, I realized, I was being a bit picky and I only got the feeling at the beginning, because the writing style only goes up from there.
You can tell that Karen M. McManus put a lot of work into, not only the main characters, but also the side characters as well. She had an in-depth story for all of them, that happened along with the plot. And she never gave up on making the plot interesting. The book never got slow in the middle, you’re hooked from the first three buzzwords on the first page, and you fall in love with all the characters as you watch their lives completely change.
Sure, this book kind of has a lot of clichés, like the bad boy from a terrible family who’s really a softie, or the country guy who everyone loves and does everything right, along with many others, but there’s just something so wonderful that she does with clichés. Clichés are clichés for a reason, people like them, even if they call them tacky. The important thing is that the clichés are done correctly.
This book is such a change of pace from my usual reading taste and I loved how there wasn’t just a murder and you find out who the killer is, there was much more, and the more I kept trying to figure it out for myself, the more mistakes I made. So please, please pick up this book, you will not regret it. It has all of the A+ important qualities a book should have.
First things first. Yes to the good nerdy girl with the bad boy cliché. I was so happy that that happened. Everyone’s probably tired of that cliché, but I loved it so much. It made me so incredibly happy. It was just unconventional and unconditional love, it was amazing. I love being there from the starting point and really seeing all of it happening. I was all for it.
And yes to the constant plot twists. To be honest, for a while there I thought Bronwyn was the killer, because when the first few Tumblr posts started surfacing, it was read from either Coopers or Nate’s perspective and I thought the author was trying to be tricky and hinting by it like that, but I’m so glad she wasn’t the killer.
Although, there really wasn’t a killer. Simon committed suicide, and the fucked-up story behind that is amazing. When they mention 4chan, you know that some sort of psychologically messed up stuff is about to happen, and it really did. The way Simon planned his suicide just to be special and had Jake by his side, kind of reminded me of the whole 13 reasons why thing, where in this case Jake would be a messed up version of Tony.
While we’re already talking about Jake, I’m sorry, boy what? When you first meet Jake, he is this sweet guy, who is kind of a control freak and likes bossing his girlfriend around. And at the end, when you find out what went down between Jake and Simon was crazy. Simon, planning to kill himself, just spilled the beans about his girlfriend Addy sleeping with TJ Forrester to Jake and Jake just helped him with his plan. I mean, maybe stop him a little bit? Maybe ask what’s wrong? No, it’s fine, just don’t think anything about actively helping a suicide and taking down your high school girlfriend, because she slept with your best friend. Yes, that stings, but Jake blew that whole thing way out of proportion, right until the point where he actually tried killing Addy. I mean, maybe I’m also kind of impressed by his ability to stay so calm. He was together with his girlfriend for a while after finding out that she cheated and he never let it show. It surprised me that he didn’t try driving the car off a cliff when Addy, TJ and him were going to the beach.
I was also so close to being upset with the end of the book. Obviously, the main story interested me a lot and I was very intrigued in the whole who dun it thing that was going on, and how beautifully the story was wrapped up, but I’m a sucker for romance and I love everything about Nate and Bronwyn. And the fact that in the last few pages, Nate just dumps Bronwyn, because he thinks he’s not good enough for her, that was such a cliché and I hate those. And in the epilogue, I was so upset that she was almost together with Evan, because as perfect as Evan may be, he ain’t no Nathaniel Macauley. It really made my day how Nate came to her piano concert-kind-of thing and wanted to fix the relationship and I’m so up for the fact that she wanted to work on it too, because she just knew she and Nate were going to last.
Plus, Karen M. McManus, good job for constantly keeping me off track. I thought maybe Janae had something to do with it, but she was just a distraction from Jake. The distractions were well placed and well done!
P.S. Am I the only one who loves it, when authors thank the readers in the acknowledgments?