one of us is lying, by Karen M McManus - a book review

One of Us is Lying, by Karen M McManus – A Book Review

One of Us is Lying is an exceptionally well written murder mystery with strong, complicated characters that are unforgettable, even after you put the book down. This was another fortunate choice I made, and I’m glad I discovered this author, Karen M Mc Manus.

one of us is lying, by Karen M McManus - a book review


Five high school students are in detention. In less than an hour, one of them is dead. Now, the other four are suspects in a murder investigation. They couldn’t be more different. Bronwyn is a model student with excellent grades and good conduct. Addy is a beautiful homecoming queen. Cooper is an athlete; and Nate is the outsider, the one who lives in a wrecked home and has always been in trouble.

base ball

They each proclaim their innocence, but as the investigation continues, secrets of each suspect’s life are unraveled, secrets that can destroy them.

One of them is lying, but who did it? And why?


My Opinion

This book is a real page turner. From the beginning I was hooked. You get a slow introduction to each character, and at first, I was drawn to only two of them, Bronwyn and Nate. Initially, I was not interested in the athlete and the homecoming queen, but as the story progresses each character deepens, and there is much more to them than their school tags.

bad boy

The situation they find themselves in also leads to uncommon friendships and finding strengths they may not have known they had. The homecoming queen ended up being a surprisingly strong character with many hidden qualities, and the athlete was more than just a young man who was good at baseball. Very soon, all four characters were equally important to me, and I ended up hoping that they were all innocent, that none of them had done it.

The author does an excellent job of endearing the main characters to the reader. They grew on me, and even after I had reached the end of the story, they were still on my mind. As an author myself, that is what I would like to achieve, writing a book with characters that stay with the reader long after he/she puts the book down.

Addy in One of Us is Lying

Even the side characters have some impact on the reader, such as Addy and Bronwyn’s sisters, Cooper’s grandmother, and Nate’s relative (whose role I will not reveal, because I don’t want to give any spoilers).

I really enjoyed seeing the story from four different perspectives. Each character, Bronwyn, Addy, Connor, and Nate, tell the story in their own unique voice, which – in my opinion – makes it even more compelling.

You will not see the end coming. Throughout the book you will keep on guessing and wondering if he or she did it. You will also wonder about some side characters, but you will not know the answer until you reach the end. I had my suspicions, but I could not figure it out until the truth was finally revealed at the conclusion of the story.


If you want a quick escape from the world as it currently is, then dive into this suspense mystery novel. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I am thinking of reading another book by Karen M McManus. Besides the intriguing plot, the writing style was continuously flowing throughout the story, and the editing was excellent. Highly recommended!

Additional Notes

One of Us is Lying is a NY Times bestseller, and it also won a whole list of awards, as you can see here.

  • Buzzfeed Best YA Book of the Year Selection
  • YA Book of the Year Selection
  • New York Public Library’s Best Book for Teens Selection
  • Popcrush Best Young Adult Book of the Year Selection
  • CBC Teen Choice Book Award Nominee
  • Goodreads Best Young Adult Book of the Year
  • And more …

==> Click here, if you’d like to read this book <==

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  1. I’m the biggest fan of books, no matter what the theme is. I read this book in one breath. I have it, and I highly recommend it. 

    The book uses multiperspectivity to show the points-of-view of all four student suspects. It has received several accolades including a 79-week run on the New York Times best-seller list. 

    Thank you for the contents of the site. 

    1. Hi Khalisa!

      It’s hard to put down, isn’t it? I’d like to read the sequel, if there is one. I thought I saw a follow up book on Amazon.

  2. Thanks for sharing such an awesome article.The theme of the book is be careful what you say because it may come back to haunt you in the future. Simon was the writer for the biggest gossip website in school so you have to be especially careful what you tell your friends.As some may be a wolf coming in sheep clothing.

    thanks,best regards.

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