quotes Elisquared likes

"Saying 'I notice you're a nerd' is like saying, 'Hey, I notice that you'd rather be intelligent than be stupid, that you'd rather be thoughtful than be vapid, that you believe that there are things that matter more than the arrest record of Lindsay Lohan. Why is that?' In fact, it seems to me that most contemporary insults are pretty lame. Even 'lame' is kind of lame. Saying 'You're lame' is like saying 'You walk with a limp.' Yeah, whatever, so does 50 Cent, and he's done all right for himself."— John Green


BLOG TOUR --- One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus [Review + Giveaway]

Title: One of Us is Lying
Author(s): Karen M. McManus
Edition: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook 368 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: May 30, 2017
Source: Rockstar Book Tours
Buy: Amazon Barnes & Noble - The Book Depository - iBooks - Audible

Tour Schedule

Week One:
5/29/2017 - YA Books Central - Interview
5/30/2017 - YA Book Madness - Review
5/31/2017 - Novel Novice - Guest Post
6/1/2017 - Literary Meanderings - Review
6/2/2017 - BookHounds YA - Interview

Week Two:
6/5/2017 - Storybook Slayers - Review
6/6/2017 - Book Princess Reviews - Review
6/7/2017 - The Cover Contessa - Interview
6/8/2017 - Book Briefs - Review
6/9/2017 - Pretty Deadly Reviews - Guest Post

Week Three:

6/12/2017 - Eli to the nth - Review (Me!)
6/13/2017 - YA and Wine - Interview
6/14/2017 - Smada's Book Smack - Review
6/15/2017 - The O.W.L. - Guest Post
6/16/2017 - Zach's YA Reviews - Review

The Summary

The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars, One of Us Is Lying is the story of what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide.

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’d 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.
My Opinion

I am not a big fan of mysteries or thrillers, so I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I started reading One of Us is Lying.  But from page one I was hooked.  

The voices of all the main narrators, Bronwyn (the Brain), Addy (the Beauty), Nate (the Criminal), and Cooper (the Athlete), are a genuine and authentic portrayal of teenagers.  And just as real teenagers are not 100% what people see them to be, none of these characters are the stereotypes readers will expect.  While this book has been compared to The Breakfast Club, I find that a lacking parallel, as there is no "fun" all-day detention party, but a serious police investigation that connects each character to the other.  Honestly, the only similarity is that there are characters who initially embody the high school stereotypes, but far supersede that box.  Even the minor characters feel fully rounded, and add in some way to the plot.  I applaud McManus's ability to craft realistic characters put in a situation that could seem very unbelievable without the grounding in reality.

Speaking of plot, I actually found this to really walk the edge of belief, in a way that shows a nuance of craft which sometimes lacks in other thriller novels (hence why I typically dislike them).  Without giving anything away, the situation these students find themselves in is very precarious, and what McManus does well is keep the readers guessing as to who's actually killed Simon and why.  The way the school officials handle the situation, the way the cops investigate, the way the families corral their wagons, all read as true, making the reader believe this horrible instance really can happen.

There were some instances of romance, but that never detracted from the true point of the book, which is to figure out who killer Simon.  But the small blooming of romance was needed to cut through the heavier subject matter.  One couple in particular, which you'll figure out, was very realistically done and I felt invested in them right away.  Additionally, there were some really great instances of love, both familial and friendly, that also add to the story and gave the characters real support within this serious situation.

The only real critiques I have is about the pacing and representation.  As far as the pacing, the resolution was a little crammed all in at the end.  I felt like the story could've been a little more rounded out at the very end.  But that hardly detracted from my overall enjoyment.  As far as representation, most of the principle cast was white, with the exception of Bronwyn, who is Latinx, which was disappointing.  The setting for the book is San Diego, which is a large, diverse city.  I wish the book reflected more of that diversity within it's characters.

I throughly enjoyed this book, so much that I may just give thrillers/mysteries a second chance.  An engaging, who-dun-it read, you'll want to pop One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus in your beach bag or in your carry-on this summer!

Final Rating


About the Author

As a kid I used to write books when I was supposed to be playing outside, and not much has changed. I'm a marketing and communications professional who also writes Young Adult contemporary and fantasy fiction in Cambridge, MA.

When not writing or working I love to travel, and along with my nine-year old son I've ridden horses in Colombia and bicycles through Paris. A member of SCBWI, I hold a bachelor’s degree in English from the College of the Holy Cross and a master’s degree in Journalism from Northeastern University. Which I have never, ever used professionally.


3 winners will receive a finished copy of One of Us is Lying, US Only.

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