Mystery. Thriller. Young Adult Fiction. Young Adult Literature. HTML:All the secrets of the Bayview Four will be revealed in the TV series now streaming on Peacock! THE #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY BUZZFEED POPCRUSH Pretty Little Liars meets The Breakfast Club (Entertainment Weekly) in this addictive mystery about what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. 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 Highs 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 wasnt an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, hed 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 whos still on the loose? Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them. And dont miss the #1 New York Times bestselling sequel, One of Us is Next! Audiobook Cast of Narrators: Kim Mai Guest - Bronwyn Shannon McManus - Andy Robbie Daymond - Nate Macleod Andrews - Cooper An addictive, devour-in-one-sitting thriller with so many twists and turns you'll be wondering until the very end: Who really killed Simon?Kara Thomas, author of The Darkest Corners and Little Monsters "This fast-paced blend of Gossip Girl, Pretty Little Liars, and classic John Hughes will leave readers racing to the finish as the try to unravel the mystery on their own."Kirkus Reviews"A smart, twisted, and unpredictable YA mystery that will have readers guessing until the very end."SLJ.
Original publication date
I enjoyed this book so much! My only small quibble would be that I donât know what kind of newspaper the Bayview newpaper is supposed to be, but where I come from reputable newspapers donât publish identifying information for minors.
Huge major spoilers for the plot!
One of the things I really liked about the book was that in the end, Simon was truly a villain. He concocted this scheme because he liked the idea of a school shooting but didnât think that would be bad enough. He is not a martyr and his suicide is not glorified. He tried to control the narrative around his death â as many teens do, especially in popular media (Iâm looking at you, 13 Reasons Why!) â but failed, which was a relief to me.
This book contains the best of teen dramas/mysteries like Pretty Little Liars, 13 Reasons Why, Gossip Girl, and even Netflixâs American Vandal (although One of Us Is Lying is not strictly a satire, it does often point out the hypocrisy of parents, gossip, and media coverage of teen scandals). It contains very little of the bad aspects: the narrative isnât a huge mess like PLL, and itâs sensitive to actual economic issues unlike Gossip Girl. However, considering it takes place in Southern California it could have used more cultural/racial diversity.
All in all, the book was extremely enjoyable and engrossing. I actually started writing down my theories as I got toward the end of the book, but even examining every possibility I could think of, I was still surprised! I highly recommend it for anyone who likes YA.
The fun of One of Us is Lying is not in its similarities to that iconic movie but in its differences. It is not just a coming-of-age story; in fact, one might argue that aspect of the story is a side effect of the main plot. Instead, it is an old-fashioned, locked-room whodunit with all of its trademark clues and red herrings but set for the Internet generation. It even has an air of a cozy mystery about it with its surprisingly close-knit community and limited setting. It is an interesting twist to a traditional coming-of-age YA novel and one that is far more entertaining.
Any murder mystery revolves around secrets and One of Us is Lying is no different in that aspect. In fact, secrets are at the heart of the novel and the reason the murder victim is so reviled throughout the school. The secrets being kept by the murder suspects are not surprising; in fact, most readers will be able to guess them well before the big reveal. The reactions to the big reveal are equally expected. What is not so mundane is how each of the murder suspects react once their secrets are public knowledge. Given that the characters are teenagers, one would expect much wringing of hands and angst-fueled monologues. While they do carry on in such fashion to some extent, they mostly act in a fairly adult manner, accepting the publicâs reactions and not letting it scare them away from carrying on as normal. It is a most welcome surprise.
The rest of the novel follows the murder suspects as they attempt to unravel just what happened in the detention room and why. There are some entertaining twists that keep readers guessing, albeit not for long. Most adult readers will be arrive at the answer fairly early into the story, but knowing who the murderer is does not ruin the story. If anything, it adds just a little something extra to the story as it allows you to focus on the clues and piece them together while you stumble upon them rather than after the fact.
One of Us is Lying is not going to make you more intelligent or help you learn something about society or yourself, but it does not present itself as such. Instead, consider it as a hybrid cozy, locked-room mystery and coming-of-age story that is merely meant to entertain rather than teach. It is fun, compelling, and completely satisfying.
Who was responsible? Brainy Bronwyn? Beautiful Addy? Delinquent Nate? Athletic Cooper? Simon, the school outcast, had declared his
Told in alternating points of view, the story unfolds as each teen addresses the events surrounding Simonâs death. Peopled with strong characterizations, the narrative offers readers a spot-on depiction of life in high school, and its twisty plot will captivate as the final reveal in this quick read is one readers arenât likely to expect.
The hook is undeniable - how does a kid die during detention? The kid in question is Simon, a not particularly well-liked kid who maintained a blog that revealed the secrets of Bayview High. Bronwyn (the brain),
The book is not without faults - all four kids are beautiful which is unlikely and annoying and some elements of the plot do not receive as much attention as they should - but an overall fast-paced murder/suspense story that contains a few worthwhile lessons for teens.
The Breakfast Club is a cultural touchstone. I thought the premise of taking the categories students are pigeonholed into and updating the idea for 2017 was an intriguing one. The students in this book face issues like sexual orientation, partner abuse, and depression that weren't explored openly by teens thirty years ago. In the end though the story fell flat for me. Parts of the story dragged while other parts didn't seem believable. I am probably in the minority and I see a lot of other glowing reviews. Also I am not a teen, only the mother of one so I am not the target audience. My daughter loves the Breakfast Club as I once did. Something about that coming of age film is able to transcend time. I don't think the same will be said of this book.
When a group of five students
McManus keeps the twists and turns coming, and the characters are really compelling. I found myself constantly surprised by this book, and having to know what happened next. And I definitely didn't see the ending coming.
I'm really looking forward to seeing what McManus writes next!
As always, I was looking forward to this book when I fist heard about it; wanting a nice mystery to dive in to, but even though it was an okay read I found the story lacking in thrills and too predictable.
The story switches between
Each character was overly clichĂ©, but not necessarily badly executed. They each have their own secret to hide which adds to the thill factor but again, it was a little predictable what their secrets were just by the type-cast roles they were slotted into.
Nate the âbad boyâ is really the only character that has layers of depth. He has a strong back story and a personality that developed and grew throughout the story. Addy also had a character growth, but it seemed more pushed to get her out of her trope and into a more likable character than it was to actually develop the character. Bronwyn and Cooper donât change all that much. They learn a life lesson with their secrets exposed and nod their heads to move along.
Even though I found the book predicable, it still had a very capable plot line for most points. I was more than happy to see police that ran an actual investigation and not just pushed to the side. They were still made to look a bit like idiots, but not as much as I usually see in YA novels.
And, of course since this is YA, thereâs a bit of romance. Honestly at points the book focused more on a budding romance than the fact that they were being accused of murder. Itâs one thing about YA novels that I dislike. Just because itâs YA doesnât mean it needs to involve heavy doses of romance. I would rather have a compelling mystery in my mystery novel.
Overall, One of Us is Lying was an okay read. Not bad, but not something Iâd jump all over either. Itâs a quick and easy read and the average reader will have no problem getting through it in a day or two.
But we actually got so much more than that. While sure, the Brat Pack in that movie each gets their own little piece of vulnerability, McManus has an entire book to explore each of her characters to their fullest extent, and can paint them in complicated and well rounded ways that gives the reader reasons to be invested in all of them. We get four perspective characters in this book. Bronwyn is the brainiac who is carrying an Ivy League dream not only as a legacy, but as a biracial girl whose Columbian side of the family literally pulled itself up by the bootstraps to start said legacy. Addy is a girl who has been taught that her only strength is her beauty, perpetuated by a vapid mother and a controlling boyfriend. Cooper is a star athlete whose family is riding on the idea of him getting a major league offer because of his pitching arm. And Nate, oh my sweet sweet Nate, is a dealer on probation living in a ramshackle home with a drunken father. And all of them have secrets, which is why all of them are viable suspects when Simon, app creator and provocateur extraordinaire, is murdered while they are all serving detention together.
All of these characters had realistic and believable voices, and I saw the vulnerability and desperation in each of them as their secrets started to come to light. It became pretty clear from the get go that none of them were actually suspects to be taken seriously, and while I donât know how I feel about that, it was a delight to be able to see them hide other things instead of throwing an entire barrel of red herrings my way. And while some of them had secrets that werenât that hard to guess, getting to the answers was a heck of a ride, especially since all of them grew and evolved so much as they got there. Addy especially went on a character arc that felt so organic and so heart-wrenching and yet empowering that I was especially happy to get to her perspective chapters. This storyline brings up questions of relationships, romance vs domination, and what sort of value we put on women and girls who are attractive but not encouraged to be much more. I also really liked reading how Nate and Bronwynâs relationship progressed and evolved. There of course was going to be some romance in this book, and of COURSE the geeky girl and the bad boy is a trope thatâs ripe for the picking. But I liked how McManus had these two interact and complement each other without making either feel like they were out of character. I also liked that we got to see Nateâs backstory and how it wasnât the usual âmy Dadâs abusive and thatâs why Iâm a nasty prickâ sob story. It wasnât much more than that, but it did address the struggles of families with mental illness, especially when resources are limited when it comes to getting help.
The big mystery itself though? Well, while I had a super fun time just going with the flow and following it to itâs conclusion, I did find the final answers to be a bit disappointing. True, I did like that our four main characters were pretty much in the clear from the get go, I still think that had there been some more twists and reveals instead of things being pretty easily explained and neatly finished it could have been a seriously stellar mystery. As it was, I was pretty much satisfied with how it all shook out, but it wasnât much to write home about. The strengths in this book were definitely in the characters, and the supporting characters that they each had in their lives. I would have been completely content if there was no murder mystery at all and it was just about a bunch of kids from different groups learning that they could, in fact, become friendsâŠ.. So, basically, âThe Breakfast Clubâ, but without that bullshit makeover scene.
âOne of Us Is Lyingâ was a fun and entertaining read. The side mysteries were fun, the characters were well written, and I would totally read something else from Karen M. McManus down the line. With the right amount of mystery and suds, itâs the perfect read for the dog days of summer.
This was a compulsive read. It was well-written, suspenseful (who killed Simon?!) and had a diverse group of people who all had one thing in common - they have secrets. These characters have a lot of depth. We get a glimpse of them before Simon dies, but then we follow them from school to home to the police station and we see how scared they are, how they're trying to "be normal", we see their families. I thought this book was clever and I loved it!
Would Janae really have framed Nate if she was terrified of Jake? No.
A lot more mature than I expected as well.
A story built on four secrets and a gossip spreading self centred
Probably not going to put it on my shelves. Didnât like all the trashy talk etc. Much more suited for high school.
"Now hereâs your assignment: connect the dots. Is everybody in it together, or is somebody pulling strings? Whoâs the
I must crow a bit...I KNEW this was going to be awesome WAY before the library loving released it into my anxiously awaiting clutches. It's high school drama with a dollop of Breakfast/ Kill Club mixed in. The writing was extremely laid back which made it easy to devour large portions in a single sitting. In fact that might be my super power of late...capable of tackling great tomes in a single bound...fights off even the worst case of late-night bleary eye.... motto: one more chapter...can't leave things off like that...just a hundred pages til the end...oops, is that the last page?... I know it's long, I'll keep working on it....aaaaand I digress (frequently)...back to the book at hand. One Of Us Is Lying is unsurprisingly easy to consume in absolutely no time at all. After just a few hours I turned to the epilogue and silently swore because it was quickly coming to an end (great sign). The world building was a little sparse but the characters were sufficiently complex though undeniably trite. It was told via multiple POVs which got a bit confusing at times, causing some pack peddling to find out which character's head we were in, but in the end it worked out well. Be warned: There are some heavy triggers (which I will not disclose...no spoilers here but be aware) within BUT the ugly spots are effectively sterilized, lacquered over and buffed to a PG tint. The ending wrapped things up so neatly as to almost be too saccharine....not my thing but right up your alley if you're one who likes their endings nice and tidy for all.
The takehome is: this is a quick, easily addictive read with a minimally showcased, predictable yet insta-love free romance.
Anyways, a few of the bookstagrammers I follow posted about this book and I was intrigued. The cover alone grabbed my attention but the similarities between this and Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None is what pulled me in and let me say, I was not disappointed.
This was a young adult novel that could still very easily appeal to an adult audience. Of course, the young adult romance was awkward and embarrassing, but isn't young romance awkward and embarrassing.
There were parts that were completely and totally predictable for me, but I think that is because I am an adult reading a novel for a younger audience. I knew immediately that there would be a romance between two characters and that another two would have a breakup. I guessed a couple of secrets and I even figured out the ending.
It was still a really captivating story. The characters were well-rounded. I could see these kids at school with my son (who is about the their age) and they reminded me of kids I went to school with (aside from the drastic technology differences -- I grew up in the age of dial-up). The kids reminded me that no matter how much changes there are some things that never change. There are always jocks, brains, trouble-makers, and a kid (or two) crying for help.
It was full of those stereotypical high school kids, but I enjoyed it. I guess it was just the right time to take a break from adult fiction. I can see how some would be bothered by that, but, for me, it is what made it interesting to read. If there wasn't the typical "good girl" and the standard "bad boy" surrounded by "jocks" and "troubled kids," the story wouldn't have read the same.
I'm glad I took the chance to read it and all the hype around the book didn't disappoint.
Five students are in detention together when one suddenly dies. There are mysterious incidents leading up to the detention - is this a coincidence or part of an intricate plan? The four remaining students all claim they had nothing to do
It is not a spoiler to say that this is a murder mystery - on my copy, it says so on the front cover, where the Breakfast Club association is hinted at so broadly as to barely qualify as a hint. And the event itself happens in the first few pages. But this book is so much more than that. It is also a pointed commentary on the nastiness of gossip in the social media age, the way that the media can be manipulated to change perceptions of people so rapidly, family dynamics, and gender and sexuality politics.
The plot itself is a bit forced in places - there is a police obsession with the four main characters, to the exclusion of all others that left me somewhat incredulous. The tortured way in which the solution is found, and the way that it is revealed was well into the realm of melodrama. And yet, in someways it was just a more PG version of what I've been seeing (and attempting to avoid) in modern murder mysteries for years - that the way to move the plot forward is to ratchet up the nastiness.
Having said that, the characterisation is fabulous. Told in first person, but rotating through the viewpoints of the four teens who survived the detention, there is such a wealth of detail. The author has done a fabulous job of creating four very different, very well rounded characters, from a range of different backgrounds and positions within the school hierarchy. The majority of the peripheral characters are also done well, although there is the odd one (the cranky teacher who gives detentions for bringing phones to class, for one) who was a little too close to caricature for credibility.
I found this mystery tightly plotted, with great characters and a compelling mystery. I felt like the bit after the climax dragged ever so slightly, but up until then the pacing was great. The four different audiobook narrators did a great job, and the shift from one voice to another may have helped keep my attention strong. Four is a good number of different perspectives for this sort of book, especially since the author did a good job of sharing out information between the four. If you like YA mysteries, this is a strong one.