Review of “One of Us is Lying” by Karen McManus

*This is one of the first full reviews I wrote, and it’s on one of my favorite books. Later this year, I will be posting a full article on my current thoughts on Karen McManus and her books.

Summary: 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.

Imagine The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars, and this is the premise of the book One of Us is Lying by Karen McManus.

When I first read the description of this book, I was immediately intrigued. I love Young Adult (YA) literature and I love mysteries. So, when the two are combined, I can’t help but to read it.

This book was a rollercoaster of emotions. With every chapter, I learned something new about the main characters, and a new twist was taken with the plot.

The plot of the book is that five students enter detention, and only four come out alive. The death wasn’t an accident, and the characters and the readers have to determine who did the killing.

The four main characters the audience follows along throughout the story are Bronwyn, Addy, Nate, and Cooper. The fifth character, who dies, is Simon.

On the surface, these characters all follow the same stereotypical tropes that many characters in teen movies do, but as the story evolves, so does our understanding of them.

When the story first began, I will admit I did not like some of the characters. They were so much like their stereotypes that they did not seem realistic. However, by the end of the story, I found a personality trait in each of them that made them more likeable and more human.

Most of the chapters are told from at least two different characters perspective. While this does add more depth to the story, it does become confusing.

I really enjoyed this book, and I recommend that anyone who loves mysteries should read this. While I did not like the many POV changes and some of the expected twists, the characters kept me involved and the ending left me amazed.

Overall, I give this a 4 out of 5 stars. (This rating has changed.)

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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