When I first heard about One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus, I was just perusing the shelves at Barnes and Noble. I was with my sister and she picked it up and bought it that day. Then I heard so much more about it on Twitter, and I knew that I needed to borrow it immediately.
One of Us is Lying follows five teenagers from Bayview High School that all land in detention together. However, mysterious events lead to only four of them making it out alive from detention. The results are endless questions about who killed Simon. Was is Bronwyn? The Yale bound, smart girl. Cooper? The next MLB star. Addy? The homecoming queen. Or Nate? The criminal. Once the police become involved, their lies unravel as you find out which one of them is lying and who really killed Simon.
As I delved deeper into the pages of One of Us is Lying, I couldn’t help but be pulled into the storyline. Page after page and suspect after suspect, I was using my own detective tactics to solve the whodunit mystery.
One of Us is Lying is the debut novel for Karen M. McManus, and I’m so excited to share with you what I thought. So let’s move onto the review!
Things I Like:
This book is full of mystery around the death of Simon. All we know for sure is that Simon was in detention with Bronwyn, Nate, Cooper, and Addy. Then what? No one knows. There are so many twists and turns that it is almost impossible to figure out whodunit.
To give you an idea, I kept a list of my own suspects (in order that I thought they had done it).
- Cooper- he seemed sketchy and being that he was in detention with Simon, it just seemed plausible.
- Mr. Avery- he is the mean teacher that hates technology and gave all five students detention that day.
- Addy- she seems to have two sides that really didn’t sit well with me for a while.
- Maeve (Bronwyn’s sister)- Simon wrote some nasty things about her on his site, so it isn’t a big stretch.
- Jake- I personally did not like him. He bothered me from the beginning of the book and I felt like he could do it.
(To give you a hint, I did get it!)
The characters, for the most part, were extremely believable. I loved Bronwyn and Nate the most. They felt the most real out of all of the characters. And the way that they both interact is true to their character. The other characters sometimes felt wishy-washy with their personalities at points. For the most part, they all held their own and were pretty well-developed.
Although this goes hand-in-hand with the mystery, I just want to point out how good this story is told. There was never a point that I was 100% certain who had killed Simon. There were so many emotions that the four characters show that make it hard to distinguish just what is going to happen next.
Things I Don’t Like:
Throughout this story, some characters are mentioned so infrequently that I have no clue who the character is. Like Addy’s mom’s boyfriend, and Bronwyn’s friends. And the names are close to other characters names related to the character. For example, Addy’s mom’s boyfriend’s name is Justin and Addy’s boyfriend’s name is Jake. I was lost for a solid few pages before I realized that Justin was not Addy’s boyfriend…whoops!
Overall, One of Us is Lying is a keep-you-on-the-edge-of-your seat mystery book that keeps you guessing until the end. I love the mystery and the characters that McManus develops. Although some characters do seem unnecessary, they don’t detract from the story. I give One of Us is Lying…
Have you read this book? What do you think? Let me know in the comments below!
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