This Is Why We Lie
Published September 21, 2021
About This Is Why We Lie
Everyone in Gardiners Bay has a secret.
When Jenna Dallas and Adam Cole find Colleen O’Dell’s body floating off the shore of their coastal town, the community of Gardiners Bay is shaken. But even more shocking is the fact that her drowning was no accident.
Once Jenna’s best friend becomes a key suspect, Jenna starts to look for answers on her own. As she uncovers scandals inside Preston Prep School leading back to Rookwood reform school, she knows she needs Adam on her side.
As a student at Rookwood, Adam is used to getting judgmental looks, but now his friends are being investigated by the police. Adam will do whatever he can to keep them safe, even if that means trusting Jenna.
As lies unravel, the truth starts to blur. Only one thing is certain: somebody must take the fall.
This one had me on the edge of my seat.
I liked the complexity of the characters. There wasn’t really anyone who was all good or all bad. Everyone had layers and made choices for reasons that, even if I didn’t agree with them, I understood what they were thinking or what motivated them to do those things. Adam especially had a lot of conflicting feelings and guilt, and it was obvious that he wanted to be a good person but struggled to believe his past hadn’t already decided what kind of person he was.
There were a few frustrating moments where Jenna would do things that seemed naïve, but I think that fit her character. She wanted to believe the best in everyone, from her best friend whose explosive argument with the girl later found murdered put her in the center of the police investigation to her absent mom. So even though I was ready to shout at the book because I didn’t want her to do something, her choices made sense, and her optimism and compassion often led to things in the story being revealed. I liked that it had more of an impact than just potentially placing her in danger.
I think fans of ONE OF US IS LYING by Karen McManus or PRETTY LITTLE LIARS by Sara Shepard will love THIS IS WHY WE LIE.
Recommended for Ages 14 up.
One minor character is gay.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
Extreme profanity used frequently.
References to sex. Kissing between boy and girl. Two boys are caught coming out of the woods together after obviously having some kind of romantic contact.
Violent Content – Trigger warnings for drug overdose, domestic violence, and murder.
Situations of peril. A girl’s body is found with bruises on her neck showing she was strangled. A boy dies by drowning after being drugged with Rohypnol. A girl is hit on the back of the head.
Teens drink alcohol in several scenes. One character sells drugs to other teens.
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