We Were Liars
by E. Lockhart
Published: 13th May 2014
Publisher: Hot Key Books
We are the Liars.
We are beautiful, privileged and live a life of carefree luxury.
We are cracked and broken.
A story of love and romance.
A tale of tragedy.
Which are lies?
Which is truth?
I picked this up after I’d seen a lot of hype about it. Firstly on Booktuber’s wrap up videos, but it also featured in a lot of blogs that I love. I eventually succumbed to the built up hype surrounding the novel and, ever curious, I purchased it.
When I bought the book I was advised to not know anything about it and to go in somewhat blind. I’d also recommend that to you, and for that reason I’ll attempt to tell you all my thoughts in the review, whilst being vague enough to allow you to get the full experience.
First thing I saw in my book was a family tree, and also a map. I didn’t realise how helpful these would be until later. When I began reading, I really wasn’t struck by the story at all. There are a lot of characters and names thrown at you at once, and my first impression was that it’s a little overwhelming. As I mentioned a moment ago, the family tree does help to ease that – so perhaps the author realised this, and added them to relieve some of the confusion.
Plot wise, again, I was completely gripped in the story until about a good third of the way through the novel. My gut felt like surely there would be some reason this book had a lot of hype surrounding it. I felt like I had to push myself to pursue reading this book though, and then an inciting incident happened that left me hooked. The mystery and suspense meant I couldn’t put the book down until I figured out what was happening. Saying that, I felt like the pace was very slow throughout the novel, which is another reason I felt that the first third was harder to get through – because I was wondering what the point of the novel was. Once the inciting incident occurs, the pace remains slow but for some reason I didn’t care as much then, as I was enveloped in the plot and intrigued by the mystery. It felt like it was deliberately, and slowly winding the reader until you’re whipping through the rest of the book, desperate to hit the big reveal.
My goodness, what a reveal it is. I’m definitely not the first to say this, and I won’t be the last, but I genuinely could not predict the ending of this book. I had suspicions that I noted down (and obviously can’t share with you to avoid spoilers) but I didn’t even scratch the surface of what I thought was happening. I was floored by the ending, but I was also a little disappointed too. It’s hard to explain why, it’s possibly because of the hype surrounding the novel – but I was waiting this huge explosive ending and felt like it definitely delivered well, but I must have been expecting more from it.
From that then, I will say this: do go into this book blind, and enjoy it for what it is. Persevere through the first chunk, and then be swept into the rest. Ignore any hype that surrounds it and just experience it for yourself. I even leant this to my mum as it felt like something she’d enjoy. As we stand she hasn’t got to it yet because she’s in the middle of other things but I can update you on her thoughts if you’re interested. Sorry that this review isn’t very informative, but I figured the best way of reviewing this book is to tell you how I felt in a broader sense – I can’t stress enough that you need to go into this blind.
Recommended to all that are looking for a great, suspenseful and mysterious novel.