Young Adult: We Were Liars by E Lockhart

Young Adult: We Were Liars by E LockhartWe Were Liars by E. Lockhart
on 23rd July 2014
Pages: 240
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 that will leave you reeling...Read it...And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE...

''We Were Liars' is heartbreaking, witty, beautiful and disturbing. E. Lockhart's best book to date.' JUSTINE LARBALESTIER..

'A haunting tale about how families live within their own mythologies. Sad, wonderful, and real.' SCOTT WESTERFELD..

Cadence (Cady) Sinclair Easton has always spent her summers on Beechwood Island with her cousins, aunties and grandparents. The family owned private island is almost like its own little world with every day life ceasing to exist. When Cady arrives on the island in summer, she can pick up with her cousins like no time has passed. Cousins Johnny, Mirren and friend Gat together with Cady are known by the rest of the family as the Liars. All born within months of each other, they are best friends and known for their antics.

Two years ago Cady had an accident. The details are hazy and no one can tell her more. Now suffering debilitating migraines and giving her life away, Cady has come back to the island but it’s not the same as she remembers but her memories are coming back…

One of the best things about this book is not knowing what is going to happen next so I’m not going to go into too much detail or spoiler territory. I just want to say that this book blew me away. I wasn’t expecting to like it as much as I did or be so drawn into Cady’s story.

Cady has been though a lot. She felt like her father killed her when he left her mother but she got though that. And she will get though whatever happened on the island two years ago. But what exactly did happen? Cady doesn’t remember it but knows that she was found swimming in the middle of the night by herself. As little pieces of her story are revealed, there is an ominous feeling of dread of just what the trauma was which caused Cady to forget weeks of her life. It’s beautifully written. I loved how the characters were shown and the plot unfolds. Cady is a wonderfully unreliable narrator. She writes about her feelings in a physical way (mixing the literal and figurative) and within this book it works. Her family is functionally dysfunctional and I liked how they came across. The eccentrically wealthy power playing grandfather, the sweet grandma, the bickering aunts, the youthful young ones. And the Liars.

Cady, Johnny, Mirren and Gat are closer than most cousins. Gat (who isn’t actually a cousin) and Cady find their feelings toward each other growing from friendship into something more. This relationship is complicated not only because of their hormones but because of how their new bond is seen by the rest of the family. Their budding romance with all its problems was one I enjoyed reading.

The mystery of what happened to Cady unfolds beautifully. Flashbacks mix with present day life in a way which makes sense and adds and extra layer to the story. The Liars, aunts and grandfather all play their parts and by the end of the book you get a real sense of who each of these characters are and why we care enough to read about them. This isn’t a book where I guessed exactly what happened and I think that is another reason why I enjoyed reading it so much.

Cady is a storyteller telling not only her story but how she views her family though little “Once Upon a Time” tales. We Were Liars is a gripping and irresistible read. From the first page to the last – I could not put this book down! With interesting characters, a mysterious plot and secrets you can’t help but want to get to the bottom of – this book is an enchanting read about first loves, family and survival.


Thanks to Allen and Unwin for the review copy


  1. This was so so amazing. I just…WOW. My mind is pretty much still reeling from the ending. I was expecting something shocking, but I’m not sure exactly WHAT I was expecting. I sure didn’t guess it. o.O And I feel like all the clues were laid out so, omg, very well written book. I feel so sad, though, about the whole thing and Cady was an amazing narrator!
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