We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Summary: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.
We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart.
And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.
We are Sinclairs.
No one is needy.
No one is wrong.
We live, at least in the summertime, on a private island off
the coast of Massachusetts.
Perhaps that is all you need to know.
We Were Liars is an incredibly difficult book to review. Not only because I loved it so much – that’s certainly part of it – but because I want to write a proper review, but I don’t want to spoil anything. It’s the type of book where the less you know going into it, the more rewarding your reading experience will be.
All I’m going to say about the book plot-wise is that it’s about a rich, powerful family named the Sinclairs who live on a private island. We Were Liars follows four friends who have nicknamed themselves “The Liars” – Candace (our narrator and the protagonist), Johnny, Mirren and Gat and how their friendship is torn apart by a series of bad decisions, lies, and greed.
Honestly, I can’t tell you much more than that in fear of spoiling something – even a minor detail – but I can promise you that the endless twists and turns this book takes are all absolutely amazing and completely mind-boggling. Everything in this book serves a purpose, and it all comes together in the end to create a horribly sad and tragic ending.
Character-wise, We Were Liars is as close to perfection as possible. Every character has depth and dimension. There are no stereotypes or underdeveloped characters. Each character has an intricate backstory that makes it easy to see how they have evolved into the person they are, and their motives and their personalities make absolute sense. From each of the four Liars to each of the Sinclair family members, each and every character was amazingly well-done. Not to mention that almost every character is harboring either a secret or are pretending to be someone they’re not, and that makes the story all more intriguing and fascinating.
There’s certainly been a lot of hype regarding We Were Liars, and I think what it comes down to is the writing. The writing is definitely something I can see as being a hit or miss for some people (Emily May’s review brilliantly describes why the writing didn’t exactly work for her), but, personally, I absolutely loved it. It’s choppy and is sometimes written in fragments, but it’s so eloquently and beautifully done. I found it worked perfectly for the type of story Lockhart was going for, and the way she was able to write so beautifully and almost embed suspense into her writing was wonderful, and it was certainly the highlight of the story.
All in all, due to the writing, We Were Liars is certainly not for everyone, but if it clicks with you – as it did me – it is an absolutely beautiful and heart-breaking tale, and I can’t recommend it enough.
Or who knows?
Maybe I’m just lying…View Spoiler »For those of you who have read the book, here is a secret code message for you…
There you go. I’m sorry for that… « Hide Spoiler