One of Us is Lying
by Karen M. McManus
Publisher - Penguin Random House
Release Date - June 1st 2017
Buy - Amazon | Book Depository
Yale hopeful Bronwyn has never publicly broken a rule.
Sports star Cooper only knows what he's doing in the baseball diamond.
Bad body Nate is one misstep away from a life of crime.
Prom queen Addy is holding together the cracks in her perfect life.
And outsider Simon, creator of the notorious gossip app at Bayview High, won't ever talk about any of them again.
He dies 24 hours before he could post their deepest secrets online. Investigators conclude it's no accident. All of them are suspects.
Everyone has secrets, right?
What really matters is how far you'll go to protect them.
Sometimes when you've just read one book and dive into the next, your brain has to catch up especially with how different the writing style and plot line was from my previous read. But once I got into it there was no stopping me. One of Us is Lying is one of those books you have to know what happens, it was just such a refreshing, engaging and thrilling ride from start to the end of the book. You won't want to put this one down.
When 5 students each get detention for getting caught with a phone in Mr Avery's class, they didn't realise they were being set up from the beginning. A car accident happens, outside the window of the detention, they get distracted, they all get up but then one is lying on the floor. One is having an allergic reaction, and then he's pronounced dead at the hospital. Simon is dead and it's not over yet. Those four students, Bronwyn, Nate, Addy and Cooper each have secrets and Simon had something against them, they are all suspects in Simon's death and it's only going to get worse for them.
What I found interesting was as the book progressed it didn't solely focus on the mystery. Karen very much focused on life of an senior, student identity, how social media can inflict pain and targeting people, that was very much Simon's agenda using his blog 'About That' to relay gossip to one another.
“She's a princess and you're a jock," he says. He thrusts his chin toward Bronwyn, then at Nate. "And you're a brain. And you're a criminal. You're all walking teen-movie stereotypes.”
It will probably become no surprise that my favourite characters are Bronwyn and Nate, Bronywn has this uncanniness and strength of always looking on the bright side along with 'bad boy' Nate. I couldn't not love him, I'm a sucker for bad boys like anyone. They themselves can seen as the power couple of the book, they strike an unlikely romance between each other which given the circumstances becomes so much more than that. But the character I saw the most potential and grew most as a person was Addy. She was the princess at the beginning, the one who had the jock of the boyfriend and did exactly as he said. I loved how she became into herself, she cut her hair, she focused on herself and that everything else like boyfriends became second nature. Her family, her sister and getting her life back on track was more important. Cooper, sweet Cooper, a jock with the fastest hand and has a boyfriend, is the most likeable of the group, kind of adorable as well. Cooper has the trouble of his family and friends dealing with his identity and how batting for the other team, shouldn't stop him from batting on the pitch at all. These 5 students proved to be beyond that. As their personas grew, they supported each other, they became The Murder Club but so much more than that, they became friends.
This is Karen's debut and it's a belter! It's addictive, fast-paced and really does keep you guessing to the end. What I loved was the writing style of the book, every chapter is time-stamped, it kind of reminded me of an episode of Law and Order. Alongside the storyline of each of the suspects, they supported each other in it's own way as well as their own story outside of Bayview. Karen's writing can totally throw you off your game, ring circles around you when you think you might know who it is. I thoroughly enjoyed the unpredictability of the book, this is a cleverly crafted YA mystery thriller.
“Things'll get worse before they get better.”
Rating - 🌟🌟🌟🌟