To Read or Not to Read: One of Us is Lying
Disclaimer: I work for the publisher of this book but am not being compensated for this review.
Karen McManus’s One of Us Is Lying has been on the New York Times bestseller list for 14 weeks running and it’s easy to see why after reading this fast-paced, twisty mystery that has been pitched as “The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars” and rightfully so!
Five students enter detention and four leave alive–Bronwyn (the brain), Addy (the beauty), Nate (the criminal), and Cooper (the athlete). The student who dies? Simon is unpopular at school, and even more so since creating a gossip app that spreads rumors faster than wildfire. He dies after drinking water that’s been tainted with peanuts–and Simon has a fatal allergy to peanuts. Each of the main four have a motive for killing Simon, and secrets to hide. So who added the peanut oil to his cup?
I really enjoyed going along for the ride in this book. Karen McManus excels at keeping the reader on her toes, revealing just enough information in each chapter to keep you wanting more. Each character had secrets and finding them out was half the fun in this novel. Seeing how this mystery brought these four characters together was also a thorough pleasure; each character is fully rounded and much more than their stereotypical nickname would imply. I especially loved seeing Addy’s journey through the novel from popular girl to girl who comes into her own.
This book is a welcome addition to the contemporary YA mystery scene (which appears to be burgeoning, perhaps in an echo of the adult fiction world where Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train have ruled the roost over the past couple of years). I would recommend it for those who enjoy a good mystery and a brisk pace.