Thanks to NetGalley and Delacorte Press for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: May 30th, 2017
Synopsis: 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 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.
I requested One of Us Is Lying because the mystery was appealing and it sort of reminded me of The Breakfast Club and Pretty Little Liars. To my surprise though this wildly exceeded my expectations. The story is related from the POVs of the four main characters. While at first Bronwyn, Nate, Addy and Cooper seem to fit the ubiquitous high school stereotypes, they are so, so much more. They all have secrets and issues they’re trying to deal with and they come across relatable and sympathetic. I liked every single one of them, even while it was constantly in the back of my head that one of them may be a murderer. Karen McManus does a fantastic job at capturing what modern-day high school life is like, especially with the use of social media. With this realistic setting and likable characters, I completely got distracted in regards to the actual mystery, so it wasn’t until the last couple of chapters that all the puzzle pieces began coming together for me and I guessed who the person was behind Simon’s death. The ending is perfect, but not in the way where everyone rides off happily into the sunset. While there are some positive moments, there are others where certain people have to face the consequences of their actions and there were some plot lines that were purposely left open. I was fine with all of it, because like the rest of the story, it made everything messily real. There’s just one aspect that prevents me from giving this a perfect rating, and I’m sorry that I have to be vague. I can’t really go into it too much because that would involve unveiling a major spoiler. All I can say is that it involved mental illness and I thought it was glossed over a bit. Otherwise, this book is bound to be a phenomenal hit with teens and adults who enjoy YA fiction. It would also make a terrific movie or even tv series. I honestly can’t wait to see what Karen McManus comes out with next!