Thanks to NetGalley and Sourcebooks Fire for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: January 3rd, 2017
Synopsis: A teenage misfit named Hawthorn Creely inserts herself in the investigation of missing person Lizzie Lovett, who disappeared mysteriously while camping with her boyfriend. Hawthorn doesn’t mean to interfere, but she has a pretty crazy theory about what happened to Lizzie. In order to prove it, she decides to immerse herself in Lizzie’s life. That includes taking her job…and her boyfriend. It’s a huge risk–but it’s just what Hawthorn needs to find her own place in the world.
By the time I finished The Hundred Lies Of Lizzie I was completely exhausted, but in a good way. The story is told in the first person POV of Hawthorn and being inside her head is a bit like being in an arcade pinball machine where the ball, or in this case the reader, is sent wildly careening around, completely at the mercy of of the player. I know how strange that must sound, but it’s the closest thing I can come up with that describes the way I felt reading this book. To be honest, I think Hawthorn is someone that readers are either going to fall in love with, or wind up incredibly annoyed with. For me it was a mix. During the first few chapters I found myself laughing out loud at many of her antics. But then there came a point where she’s so self-absorbed and immature that she started getting on my nerves. But my annoyance didn’t last long, because it becomes clear that Hawthorn is a lonely girl, bullied by most of her peers, who feels as though she’s unlovable. Her parents love her, and although her popular older brother, Rush and she have a strained relationship, it’s obvious as the story proceeds, he cares about her. And then there’s her best friend Emily, who to be honest is a much better friend to Hawthorn, than Hawthorn is to her. Yet Hawthorn still feels alone and isolated. I think the biggest issue is that she doesn’t know where she fits in, and as a result she pushes away people who care about her and could help her. She also has an overactive imagination which gets her into trouble on more than one occasion. While the mystery centers around the disappearance of Lizzie Lovett, a girl Hawthorn barely knew, she becomes obsessed with not only discovering what happened to her, but also obsessed with the girl herself. Why was Lizzie so popular? Why did everything seem to come easy to her? Everyone loved her, including Rush. After meeting her once, Hawthorn had even dreamt of Lizzie taking her under her wing and offering her guidance, and when this didn’t happen Hawthorn never got over it. Because of this, the mystery actually takes a backseat to the drama around Hawthorn, but that doesn’t make the story any less engrossing. One thing that did bother me a little was Hawthorn’s developing relationship with the older, self-involved Enzo, Lizzie’s boyfriend who was there the night she disappeared. I understood why Hawthorn became fascinated with him, but I never really bought into why he became interested in her as much as he did. There are many secondary characters that come and go, including a caravan of hippies, but instead of taking away from the story, they add color and flavor to it. The ending is about as near to a perfect conclusion as you could ask for, and wraps everything up satisfactorily. I don’t think The Hundred Lies Of Lizzie Lovett will be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you like quirky characters, and you can relate to being an outsider, I highly recommend this. Due to some sexual scenes though, I wouldn’t recommend this for younger teens. Sedoti’s writing is witty and refreshing and I’m looking forward to seeing what she comes out with next.