Review: We Were Liars

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Release Date ~May 13, 2014
Delacorte Press ~ Random House
ISBN13: 9780385741262
Review copy received from Random House Canada for review

Goodreads Synopsis:
A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart.

I have heard so much about We Were Liars from other bloggers, such that I was dying of curiousity! People were raving about the twist, and so I began hunting for this book in bookstores... only to realize that it hadn't even been released yet.

Having now read We Were Liars, I can readily confirm that it is a thrilling read, a story absolutely brimming with secrets.

  1. An emotional narrative:

    E Lockhart tells a brilliant story, although while not quite as shocking as I anticipated, of the tragic events to befall the main character's family (Cady). The writing style is poignant, and every mixed emotion felt by Cady is likewise experienced by the reader. As a reader, you are
  2. A Shakespearean-esque tragedy:

    The day after having finished We Were Liars I saw a performance of King Lear, and it struck me how similar the two were in some ways. Let me emphasize that they are not the same story; but there are some characteristics the two share, such as the family dynamics. We Were Liars clearly evokes some of the feelings and themes from classical literature.
  3. An unreliable narrator:

    I absolutely love reading books with an unreliable narrator, because I'm left guessing and gradually putting together all the clues and hints as to what actually happened. Cady is particularly effective as an unreliable narrator because even she isn't sure about the truth of what happened.
After hearing so much about how the ending was truly shocking and surprising, I was a tad disappointed when I finished and discovered that my initial prediction was mostly correct (but not entirely). Then again, I think this was the ideal ending for the book and I don't think there could have been an ending that worked better with the story than this one. I won't say anything else because this is a story that must not be spoiled!

This is the kind of book that stays with you long after you finish reading it. I'll have to find time to reread it, because I feel like I have more questions after having read it than I did before I started!


Maji Bookshelf said...

great review! I agree about the unreliable narrator! I think it added something more mysterious to it. I agree about the ending. It is pretty perfect!

great review,
- Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

Stephanie @ Once Upon A Chapter said...

Ah! I've wanted to read this book for so long that it feels like it shouldn't be a new release! After reading your review, I placed a hold for We Were Liars with my library. Fingers crossed it won't be too long before I get it.

Thanks for the review!

My Thoughts.... Literally! said...

Great review! I had such an emotional connection with this book. I loved the emotional narrative and I totally agree that it evoked classic literature. It reminded me a lot of mid-Century American works like Catcher in the Rye and The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. One of my favorites of the year!

Also I really want to find out what part of the twist you didn't solve. I'm so curious. I'm going to DM you on Twitter.

Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally

Andrea @ Cozy Up said...

I really need to read this book, everyone is raving about it, and especially after reading your review I believe I will love it! I also am very interested in how you compare it to King Lear, that point makes me want to read it more just to see how they are similar! Thanks for the amazing review (as always), Brenna :)

Unknown said...

I started (& finished) this last night haha I didn't guess the twist, but maybe because I read it all in one go and didn't have time to really think about what it might be? It's actually nice to be surprised by a book though - I find I often guess what's coming next in books and that gets a bit boring after a while. We need to discuss this soon - I'm interested to hear what you thought of it now that I'm done!

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