Hey Pals!! Today, after 126 years (don’t ask me why I chose that specific number, I don’t know), I will be doing a book review! This is a spoiler-free book review of the one and only- One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. Mcmanus! Without much ado, let’s get started!!
Note: This is a spoiler-free review, however, there might be minor spoilers regarding the romance of the book in the Nate Macauley and the romance section. If you really don’t want to be spoiled for anything just skip that, but I still think it’s not that major so you can read those sections too.
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.
The plot was the second-best thing about this book. The plot was intriguing enough to get me hooked. It addicted me to the book to a level that when I wasn’t reading it, I just wanted to go pick it up, even when nothing much was happening. There was this twist at the end that I hadn’t predicted, that caught me off guard. At first, I thought it was a little weird, but I still liked how it wrapped up the entire mystery thing in a decent way.
Also, one thing you need to know, many people consider that the way this book depicted mental illness was problematic, which may not be true, because the book did not promote it, but if you do find something disturbing, don’t say that I didn’t warn you. Just check the trigger warnings once to be sure, if you want. I’m not including them because…I don’t want to.
The writing was cool. I mean, at some parts you might feel that the book is dragging a little bit when we get a lot of the background of each of the characters, so that’s one thing you might want to look out for you. But it’s also fun because all the time you’re wondering- who did it?!
This, this!! This is the best part of the book! People could argue the characters were cliché, but that was the purpose of the story, wasn’t it? To make the characters cliché. You have the pretty princess, the brainy beauty, the baseball boy, and the dangerous drug dealer. And believe me, the characters were done well. Each of them had depth. The story was written from each of the four characters’ perspectives, and I think the author did a good job at making each of them fairly interesting.
The one thing I didn’t like about one of the main characters was the major secret that Cooper was hiding…it was just too cliché. Same with Nate, a cliché trope was involved with his story too. So if you’re a person who can’t handle too much cliché, this might tick you off, but the rest of the book is still good enough to maybe dull the impact.
And don’t even get me started on the side characters! One of them, I’m not gonna name which one so as not to ruin the fun for you, was written really well, with just enough foreshadowing about their role later in the story to make that ending make sense…did I make sense?
And now for my most favourite character- NATE MACAULEY! 😭 I can’t get over him, I need help! That guy, I mean that guy is just…😍 You wanted to swoon, right? If you’re a typical, weird teenager like me who can’t get enough drama in their own boring life, you will love-with-a-capital-L Nate, because he is freaking hot! Okay? Nobody can deny that 😤, I have my image of him in my mind and he’s damn hot! Not just hot, he’s an awesome boyfriend too!
If you’re looking for me to tell you why I find him so hot, I have absolutely no idea how I can do that in a spoiler-free review. But I’ll try. So here goes:
As is pretty obvious by now, Nate is pretty much the bad guy in the story. He used to be friends with Bronwyn, but then they drifted apart, but now they’re getting closer again due to the murder thingy that they are involved in. It’s not just about the bad-boy vibe that comes along with Nate that makes me like him, you know? There are lots of bad boys. It’s about how he’s got lots more to him, and the author has written it in a very balanced manner. She hasn’t made him bad exactly, she’s just given him a dark vibe. Usually, authors write bad boys who have a soft spot for a girl and hate everybody else or bad boys who aren’t bad blah blah. Nate is kind of a mix of both but in a good way. As I said, he’s just got a dark vibe to him, he’s not bad.
Nate and Bronwyn make such an amazing pair. I mean, the person he is to Bronwyn is basically what makes me love him so much! He’s sweet, but at the same time when it comes to romance, aah the scenes will leave you wanting for more! The fact that Bronwyn, despite being a brainy girl doesn’t think of herself as ugly or whatever is another thing that makes the romance worth it- Bronwyn feels realistic! And the late movie nights these two have are to die for! So the romance was one of the best aspects of the story.
Yes, the epilogue deserves a section of its own. That epilogue touched my heart and I’m not okay 😔. It was sweet! I’m not even gonna tell you what it is about, but if you were shipping the same characters that I was throughout the whole story, you will love it!
4.5/5 stars…or maybe just 4? I do recommend this if you’re looking for a fun murder mystery and an, ahem, jaw-dropping, heart-wrenching, amazingly gorgeous character…I’ll stop.