Author: E. Lockhart
Publication date: May 13, 2014
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Source: An e-galley provided by the publisher for an honest review
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.
Honesty circle time: I don't want to review this book. At the same time, I do. But I don't. The thing is that I want to get my opinion out there (of course), but I feel like I should just go BAAA because as you can see, I DNF'd it. I tried my hardest, I really did. I stuck it out longer than most books I DNF, reaching all the way to 58%. Usually when I'm that far, I keep reading, but go into turbo-skim read. This time, I just skipped to the ending, I couldn't handle the feeling of it being a ball and chain around my neck.
|Me throughout reading. Unfortunately, false.|
Problem #1: Boredom. I thought I'd get this problem out of the way since it's the biggie and most obvious one. Usually when I DNF, it's out of boredom. When a book is annoying, but interesting, I actually tend to stick it out. But boring? Adios. We're introduced to Cady, the narrator, who has suffered an accident and can't remember what happened last year. There's this THING that happens, but since she's the narrator, we're left in the dark as well. I feel like I am the ONLY one who was on the same page as Cady. Everyone else's updates seemed to be all "oh, I totally guessed in the beginning," but I had no clue. Now, you'd think that that would help me. WRONG. The only thing it did was make me frustrated because I was completely lost in the story. I was trying to find the plot in it all and wanted something interesting to happen. I love twists and the "big mystery" plot usually in books, but I felt like I was a elementary algebra student who accidentally ended up taking a calculus class.
Problem #2: The writing. One area the boredom stemmed from was the writing. I can see many people LOVING this style and others not so much. I adored Taherah Mafi's style in Shatter Me and I can see how these are similar, but I didn't like it at all in this one. It felt forced, annoying, and boring. That's a terrible triple threat.
Problem #3: More awkwardness. This is most definitely related to problem #2 above. Along with the writing, the narrative felt strange. Really random scenes, awkward conversations, the oh-so annoying and repetitive "Gat, my Gat" mantra. It all meshed together and formed this awkward mess for me. Like I said, many people adore it all and thought it was captivating and beautiful. I really wanted to be one of them.
When I read glowing reviews for this and then finally got accepted to read an e-galley, I jumped up and down and thought "hello, favorite 2014 read." So I had high expectations to say the least. Even if I did lower them, I still don't think this book was quite for me, no matter how interesting it seemed to be. 58% through the book and I still couldn't connect, understand, or even care.
|I TRIED TO HOLD ON.|
My recommendation isn't to avoid this book. It's to read other reviews. It's out now so look for it in the library. I'm the black sheep here so obviously, other people have enjoyed it immensely. I just wished I could've been one of them.
Verdict: A potentially amazing book, but one that made me dread reading.
Note: Any quotes used may be altered after publication.