2019 is just around the corner, and I thought I would review one of my favourite reads from this year! Especially for those days when you want to buy a book even if there is an ever-growing unread pile on your shelf! I know the feeling, so grab a cuppa and read on if you’re interested in teen mysteries!
The book One of Us is Lying by Karen M McManus, is a great read and very addictive. In my opinion, it wasn’t quite like your average teen read yet it was still a thrill. I know I’m late to the game to review this book but I just had to get my word out. Better late than never, right? From the blurb, it gave me Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars vibes, a film and TV series which I can never get bored of. The book covers serious issues today such as homophobia, drugs, abusive relationships, bipolar disorder, alcoholic parents, and academic pressure. I liked how the author brought awareness to these issues because it’s easy to forget others are suffering as we deal with our own problems.
When I read the first chapter, my immediate thought was “Oh no, it looks like the usual clichés in a high school environment” However the character development was fantastic, I liked all of the main characters, a rare occurrence for me. Karen took a twist on the typical high school stereotype as they became so relatable which made it more enjoyable to read. I assumed from the blurb that the characters would be teenagers who have a reputation which they refuse to break. I was pleasantly surprised by the direction McManus took, it was refreshing. This book goes through the insecurities, and drama that every high school student has experienced. I loved that because it brought back memories and made me feel better that there are others too who have similar problems as I did.
The plot I admit was easy to figure out towards the end, but it was still fun to read. Even if the ending didn’t surprise me, characters actions did. In this book, the narrative changed every chapter. I’m a fan of this because I came to understand characters more and learn more about their mindset. The voices of the characters didn’t blend together, a common mistake I find with other authors. However as it was told in the viewpoints as the potential murderers, I didn’t get the urge to scream at the book “WHO DID IT?” because none of the characters had a hatred for Simon.
One aspect of the book I did not like was that there was a lot of slut-shaming. I know it can still happen today but we need to get over it! There are two characters in the book that have cheated (a boy and a girl). A huge portion of the book is spent focusing on the girl who had a one night stand and we only brushed on the boy who was having a physical affair for months! I get that the book is supposed to be realistic and relatable; however I think it spreads the wrong message. The girl had to be the one who was pretty and popular, one cliché in the book I was not a fan of.
Overall, I would recommend reading this book if you want a quick read. It wasn’t my favourite but it wasn’t the worst I have read. Karen has done an amazing job, considering it is her first novel. I look forward to reading her next books she publishes.
Have you read this book? Your opinions?
Link to book: