13 June 2014

Review: We Were Liars

We Were Liars
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had actually forgotten that E Lockhart was the same author as The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau Banks, which I love. With that said, it's...easy to categorize her recent output as being focused on the trials and tribulations of the economically privileged, and, while that might at least be part of her intent, it really misses the broader point of what she accomplishes. Disreputable History was more of a focus on friendships and fabrications at a boarding school, not so much the super rich and their secret societies. We Were Liars is not so much about how They live, but how We live, and the way families lie to each other when they don't have to as well as when they do.

The story takes place on a small semi-private island off the coast of Massachusetts, where four children have grown up over the course of a number of summers. In summer 17, years after one girl's accident, the four are finally back together and nothing is really the same, and no one is willing to admit why.

This book works well because it's honest, and brutally so. As an adult reader, I saw a lot of dynamics portrayed in this book in my own life, and that's not a happy thought now or before. The curveball, of sorts, might be a little far-fetched, but it makes sense within the context of the story being provided, and the little hints and glimpses into the lives of the people who all come to this island every summer feel real and end up being continually heartbreaking.

Another solid read all around, really. If you've waffled on this a bit, don't. It's one of the better reads of the year.

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