Mystery/Thriller (Teen)

Review: One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

A YA thriller that reads as a cross between Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars


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I recall reading this book when it first came out but I couldn’t remember it; suddenly, it started popping up everywhere so I decided to pick it up and reread it!

One of Us Is Lying book cover

One of Us Is Lying

by Karen M. McManus

Published April 30, 2017 by Delacorte Press
Series: One Of Us Is Lying
ISBN: 1524714682

Data from Goodreads

Summary (Goodreads): 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 Review: Not A Bad YA Thriller

As someone who reads many books in this genre, I will admit I was pleasantly surprised by this one. It has good pacing, and a good cast of characters that made it an enjoyable read. It was like a crossover between Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars – and it worked well!

The Pros: What worked for me

  • I liked all of the characters. Each had their own unique voice and personality and the author gave each an opportunity to shine. I liked that even though they were in the midst of this mystery, there was organic character development that occurred.
  • The story itself was interesting. I found myself invested in discovering the identity of the killer. The fast pace of the story kept me on my toes, which is always a good thing in a thriller!

The Cons: What I didn’t like

  • I don’t necessarily know if I bought into the final reveal. It didn’t feel as well rounded as the rest of the story.
  • One of the characters was not my fave. I won’t say who but this person just seemed like such a random addition and lacked a clear personality.

Overall, this was a pretty good thriller. The author created well developed characters and the story was fast-paced. I’m giving this a solid 3/5 stars!

Happy reading ~

4 thoughts on “Review: One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

    1. Sometimes I find taking a step back and returning to a book helps me give it a proper chance and appreciate it more. In this case, I ended up enjoying it more the second time around! Let me know if you decide to give it another go, would love to hear your thoughts.

  1. YA thrillers can be such a hit or miss with me too! It’s like everything is great but suddenly all loose ends get tied up in the name of mysterious revelations and I’m disappointed, haha. Anyway, this book has been on my TBR but I’ve seen such average ratings so I didn’t pick it up yet. Loved your review, though! <3

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