Title: One of Us is Lying
Author: Karen M. McManus
Release Date: 1st June 2017
Reading Time: 7-9 Hours
Addy. Brownyn. Cooper. Nate. Simon. Five students walk into detention. Only four walk back out. Simon was about to post juicy reveals about all four of his classmates on his gossip app. Now he’s dead, and the police say it’s murder. Someone is lying. But who?
I used to devour crime thrillers and mysteries when I was a teen. I read so many I got sick of the genre, and moved on to YA (I was far from being a YA myself at this point). And then I stumbled upon One of Us is Lying, a YA mystery, a mix of my old and new addictions, and I just had to check it out.
One of Us is Lying is an amazing debut by Karen M. McManus. I practically read this overnight. This book gave me a book hangover. I am too old to stay up reading all night. I am almost 30. I have responsibilities. I have a baby, for goodness sake. But I did, and I regret nothing. Nothing! Because One of Us is Lying is just impossible to put down, mostly because of its characters. You may be forgiven for thinking this is full of cardboard YA stereotypes. Said stereotypes are printed on the cover. You’d then be pleasantly surprised to find fully flesh out, grounded, relatable characters that, no matter how hard you try, you will fall in love with (despite the fact that one of them may have kinda murdered a guy). Even the little bit of romance felt well developed and believable, and we all know that is one of the greatest pitfalls of YA (no #instalove here!). And while at first I thought four different, first person narratives might become muddled, McManus does an excellent job of keeping everyone’s voice unique and distinct.
While I did figure out the twist early on, it didn’t make it less enjoyable, because I was far more interested in the characters and their developing relationships as they become part of the ‘Murder Club’. And I’ll admit, my convictions did waver here and there. While McManus provides you with all the clues to solve this mystery, she still manages to keep you guessing at times.
As soon as I finished it, I wanted to re-read it. I can’t remember the last time that happened. I was just not ready to say goodbye to these characters! (Even the murderer.) Karen M. McManus has done something very impressive: she has managed to write herself into my favourites shelf with her debut novel, and let me tell you, getting on my favourites shelf is no easy task. Trust me on this, read this book, thank me later.
TL,DR: An amazing debut YA novel, with strong characters and a solid mystery, that will give you a book hangover.
*I received this ARC free from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review*