My Rating: 5 of 5 stars
There’s not even a Scrabble word for how I’m feeling right now…
This story left me defeated, but its tragedy was paired equally with an unconventional beauty. It gripped me instantly to the point where I couldn’t stop thinking about its mystery…
Its quiet calamity.
The suspense is painted on rather thickly, which is not to say that readers will not form an accurate theory early on. But the journey remains worth it whether you’ve Sherlock Holmes’d this one or not.
The plot introduces itself in a vague manner and slowly unravels. I found that the messages held more power than the characters delivering them—the sum was definitely greater than its parts. Which underlined the overall tone nicely.
This review may seem just as ambiguous as the story itself, but it must be if you wish to obtain the full effect of its delivery.
I will say this, however: We Were Liars is a haunting portrayal of a group of teenagers who have formed a sacred bond; each one striving to be free and longing for acceptance. They consider love more important than social and economic stature, and are displeased with the prejudices surrounding their world.
They are young.
They are passionate.
They are imperfect.
They each suffer their own personal injustice. And this is their story.
“What if we could somehow stop being the Beautiful Sinclair Family and just be a family? What if we could stop being different colors , different backgrounds, and just be in love?”
The writing was unique and although it may not suit everyone’s taste, I relished in it. I’ve noticed some readers point out the use of purple prose. While I certainly see where they’re coming from, I’d say the writing displays merely purple patches. I thought the author’s use of descriptive imagery was creative and applied with a gentle hand—nothing over-the-top or showy.
The story is told through the voice of a confused, emotional, and dejected eighteen year old girl—and the writing remained consistent with her distinctive perspective. It was poetic and profound—drifting in as a gentle breeze and building to the swirling force of a hurricane. It may not knock your socks off, but it certainly took my breath away.
“She made me act normal. Because I was. Because I could. She told me to breathe and sit up.”
I’d recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a plot that persuades you to wonder. To readers who can accept the bittersweet circumstances of life displayed within their fiction. This is not a character-driven novel. The story shines brighter. I don’t think I ever fully connected with any character at all–and the fact that I was moved to tears by the finish is what made this a five-star read, for me.
“Someone once wrote that a novel should deliver a series of small astonishments. I get the same thing spending an hour with you.”
Although I found this story entirely unique, if I had to compare, I’d say its structure reminds me a bit of On the Jellicoe Road
Its haunting tone, as well.
A truly addictive, out-of-the-box read!
“The universe is seeming really huge right now,” he told me. “I need something to hold on to.”
▪ Genre/Category: YA
▪ Steam Caliber: No steam
▪ Romance: Young but present
▪ Characters: Teens struggling to find their way
▪ Plot: Mysterious. Twists slowly unravel
▪ Writing: Poetic. Simple yet profound.
▪ POV: First person: Heroine
▪ Cliffhanger: None. Standalone