Book Review: One Of Us Is Lying By Karen M. McManus

Book Details

Title: One Of Us Is Lying

Writer: Karen M. McManus

Author Profile

Karen M. McManus is the author of the New York Times and international bestselling young adult novels One of Us Is Lying and Two Can Keep a Secret. Her work has been translated into 39 languages worldwide. Karen lives in Massachusetts and holds a master’s degree in Journalism from Northeastern University, which she mostly uses to draft fake news stories for her novels. For more information, visit or @writerkmc on Twitter and Instagram.


The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little LiarsOne of Us Is Lying is the story of what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide.

Pay close attention and you might solve this.

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.

Non Review Rant

A whodunit mystery novel after a series of YA romance ones is just what I needed.

Plot & Review

Five students get into the detention, one of them dies and the other four become the prime suspects of the investigation.

Apart from the mystery and the love angle, the book also covered other YA issues like sexual orientation, the obsession with control, the need for approval, the desperation to fit in, fighting diseases, attraction and heartache.
And then a variety of parents – addict parents, perfect parents, live-in-denial parents…

In reality, the grown-ups deal with same issues, though they try to camouflage it better.

As the investigation progresses, the four suspects realize who is a real friend and who is not. They deal with their internal emotional conflicts, the peer pressure, and the frenzy as media gets involved. I like how the four of them befriend each other over the course. Some side characters are also worth mentioning.

I liked that Addy did not go out with TJ, as that would have been so cliché. The cliche was reserved for our dear Bronwyn and Nate. Bronwyn gives a great performance and Nate appears to praise her, to admit his mistakes and his love for her.

I don’t know but who-and-why was staring at us since the beginning. I just went on to read for Nate and Bronwyn. I loved how the characters grew.

Bronwyn always had her sister by the side.

Addy became friendly with her sister

Ashton, knowing her better to the point that eventually when Ashton rents a place, Addy is invited to stay.

Cooper tries to be friendly with Addy when their common friends have abandoned Addy.

Cooper’s father’s obsession with his son’s game and success is also portrayed nicely. But, Cooper has Nonny for support.

And Nate, although much later in the story, but his mother shows up and is there for him.


It was a good read. Despite having guessed the story, I could read it till the last page. That’s good writing, I would say.

Cover: 5 / 5
Plot: 4 / 5
Writing: 4 / 5

Overall rating: 4/5

Shabana Mukhtar

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