We Were Liars is a YA (young adult for those who don’t know biblio lingo) novel by E. Lockhart, the author of other YA novels such as The Boyfriend List and The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, among others.
Summary (via Goodreads): 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.
And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.
I read this book as part of the YALSA Hub Reading Challenge. It’s about a girl named Cadence (Cady for short), her cousins Johnny and Mirren, and a boy named Gat; they spend summers at Martha’s Vineyard and call themselves The Liars.
The novel begins the summer Cady is 17. She has terrible headaches (think migraines on steroids) as a result of an accident that happened the summer she was 15. Cady has no recollection of this accident; she just remembers waking up on the beach alone and half dressed. And NOBODY will tell her what happened. So the big question of the novel is, WHAT HAPPENED TO CADY??
I pretty much read this book just to figure out what, indeed, did happen to Cady. And while I think the ending was worth the read (really, I did NOT see that ending coming), the rest of the book is a big yawn. Why? Because the characters themselves are a big yawn.
Cady is the oldest of the Sinclair grandchildren. Her grandfather owns the island at Martha’s Vineyard that her and the Liars visit every summer. Cady’s mother is one of three Sinclair daughters. The Sinclairs are a wealthy, distinguished family. And by distinguished I mean a little fucked up. All the sisters do is fight about the money they hope their father will leave them when he dies. It’s kind of pathetic. This does not go unnoticed by Cady.
However, I really just couldn’t get behind the character of Cady. She just emits a “poor little rich girl” vibe to me. Which don’t get me wrong, I feel bad for the girl. But there’s nothing about her personality that makes me want to care about her or invest any sort of feelings.
Overall, this book was ok. Not the worst book I’ve read, but not the best either. I will say that I am intrigued to read some more of E. Lockhart’s books because she’s a National Book Award finalist and a Printz Award nominee, which is kind of a big deal. But I won’t be putting them at the top of my to-read list.
Goodreads rating: 2 stars (it was ok)
Source: checked out from my public library