'One Of Us Is Lying' Book Review

Updated: May 24

Book: One Of Us Is Lying Author: Karen McManus Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Thriller, Fiction Pages: 358 (Kindle) Published: June 2017 (UK) My Rating: 4/5 Stars

Good morning everyone! Today's book review is Karen McManus's 'One Of Us Is Lying'.


On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention.

Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.

Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.

Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.

Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.

And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High's notorious gossip app.

Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention, Simon's dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn't an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he'd planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who's still on the loose?

Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them.

(Synopsis from Goodreads - Link)


I've just finished Karen McManus's book 'One Of Us Is Lying' and I'm glad to say that I did enjoy it... yet not as much as I thought I would've. The book begins with five students entering detention, but only four of them leave alive. With each of them a suspect and each keeping a secret, the police have a difficult case to solve - who committed the murder?

Based strongly on stereotypes, each character has a unique personality and background. Nate, with his already criminal background, quickly becomes suspect number one. Bronwyn with her ambition and knowledge definitely has the intelligence to pull off a murder. Cooper desperately hopes his baseball practice will lead to fame and may just do anything to make it so. While Addy, obsessed with her looks and her boyfriend, appears to be the least likely suspect of them all, or is she?

The story is told from the viewpoints of the four suspects which allows the reader to really see the differences in thoughts, behavours, personalities and backgrounds between them all. As you may have guessed, the stereotypical behaviours as mentioned in the synopsis does continue throughout, yet there's some wonderful character development from some of them which does provide a couple of twists.

The writing style kept you guessing, with cliffhangers galore I was constantly turning my suspicions from one character to the next. I'm glad to say that I didn't see the ending coming, so that was a nice little surprise. However, I did feel that it was a little too long and some elements could have been shortened. I found myself nearly putting the book down a couple of times, yet soon enough it picked up the pace again - especially towards the end. If you're into detective/thriller genres then this one is definitely for you! I'd also say that it would make a great little TV series too!

There's a few themes mentioned, yet after reading some reviews of other readers there are mixed opinions on the portrayal of topics including LGBTQ+ and mental health. I can't really touch on these for risk of spoiling the book for you, but if you do have any concerns or questions, you're more than welcome to message me. As a trigger warning, it's important to note that there are mental health-related themes that some readers may find triggering or upsetting (again, you're welcome to message me for details). There's also some strong language within the book too.

Overall, I'd give this book four out of five stars. I did enjoy it and it definitely kept me guessing, but I'm also not particularly eager to read it again any time soon. Although I am glad I've finally read it, as it's been on my TBR for too long! :')

Have you read 'One Of Us Is Lying'? Did you guess correctly?

Take care,

Sophie x

'One Of Us Is Lying' - Karen McManus

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