We Were Liars Book Review

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by Isabella Macioce

“We are liars. We are beautiful and privileged. We are cracked and broken.”

E. Lockhart, We Were Liars

We Were Liars is a modern, realistic fiction novel, born from the thoughts of E. Lockhart, that somehow manages to be something more than spectacular. However, before you can truly understand just how deep the story goes, first you must know a little something about it.

Cadance is not an ordinary girl, at least not by ordinary girl standards. She is privileged and has a family that is so wealthy that they can afford to maintain and live on their own island. Every summer, Cadence spends her days on the island, laughing and being with her family. They seem to have everything, but they don’t. E. Lockhart manages to paint a picture of a family that is perfect and broken all at once. With her parents divorced, her grandmother deceased, and her grandfather harboring a strange dislike for the boy she loves, Cadence knows they’re not perfect. So why do they keep pretending to be? Despite all that, Cadence grows up nearly normal.  That is, until summer number 15.

Cadence can’t remember Summer 15, and can’t figure out why no one wants to fill her in. Her grandfather seems lost, her aunt seems crazy, and her mother keeps treating her like a child. And as if that wasn’t enough, she keeps getting these terrible migraines that somehow have something to do with what happened to her in Summer 15. The only comfort she has is the company of her cousins and Gat (her step cousin), who she keeps falling more and more in love with. But even they, the ones she trusts most, seem to be lying to her. Will she ever really figure out the truth of what happened the night of Summer 15?

This book is honestly a masterpiece. It’s rare nowadays to find something in the young adult section that sends such deep and powerful messages. The writing is astounding, E. Lockhart shapes her sentences in ways that sticks in your head, and make you think. The author is constantly throwing in metaphors and similes and an abundance of figurative language that make the entire book slip into place. We Were Liars isn’t exactly tiny, but it will go by so fast, leaving you wishing for more. It’s a truly beautiful story of a broken girl, trying to fit together the pieces of something she can’t quite remember. Cadence is a brilliant main character, and though she is anything but average, she is somehow relatable through the text. She fights against things that teenagers today go through, such as having her parents divorce, and falling in love, even when she knows she probably shouldn’t.

The supporting characters are written outstandingly each with their own motives, each with their own past. And though this might seem like just another ordinary realistic fiction novel about a girl and her troubles, trust me, it isn’t. Ask anyone who’s read it and I guarantee they will tell you how much it will surprise you. Book reviews are traditionally non-spoilers and who would dare break tradition, so I will say nothing about the ending except that it will knock you off your feet.

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