Book Review

One Of Us Is Lying // Gossip Girl meets Pretty Little Liars

 This is a spoiler free review.

One of us is lying

Synopsis (2)

Yale hopeful Bronwyn has never publicly broken a rule.

Sports star Cooper only knows what he’s doing in the baseball diamond.

Bad body Nate is one misstep away from a life of crime.

Prom queen Addy is holding together the cracks in her perfect life.

And outsider Simon, creator of the notorious gossip app at Bayview High, won’t ever talk about any of them again.

He dies 24 hours before he could post their deepest secrets online. Investigators conclude it’s no accident. All of them are suspects.

Everyone has secrets, right?

What really matters is how far you’ll go to protect them.

Heart BorderOne of Us is Lying is a story filled with tons of secrets, gossip and backstabbing. It’s Gossip Girl meets Pretty Little Liars and just like in both those all the characters have secrets that they want to keep secret. Secrets so powerful they’d kill to keep them from being discovered and that is exactly what happens in this story. In One of Us is Lying we follow the journey of four very different characters all suspected of murdering their fellow classmate Simon – the keeper of all the secrets and creator of the schools notorious gossip app “About That”.

Just like any good teen drama One of Us is Lying manages to suck you into the story and lives of its characters. It opens up with a solid story and interesting circumstances that tickled my senses and had me turning pages long into the night. I enjoyed reading about all four our main suspects, yes they might have been cliché teenage characters, but they were totally relatable and that’s what contemporaries are ultimately made for – relatability. The only thing that bothered me a little bit was that the four way narrative was easy to mess up and I frequently forgot who’s point of view I was reading from.

I got along with most of the characters that McManus created as well as the great character development that went along with each one. Addy is a character I thought showed the most growth, she went from former prom queen and being in a controlling relationship to care free rebel. Cooper is another character I enjoyed reading about and his story was really compelling. There was some diversity presents in the story, but unfortunately not all of it was well executed. The inclusion of non white characters were great as well as the mention of bipolar disorder.

I however felt that the rest of the diversity representation was harmful and not well executed. Depression is definitely not handled tactfully and I felt that it was used as a plot device and for entertainment/shock value. Overall I expected lots of mystery and thrill but sadly that was not the case. One of Us is Lying had a really interesting story it just lacked execution in the final reveal and twists.

3 Star

 Content Warning — Harmful representation of Mental Illness, Sexuality and Relationships.


I kindly received a copy from Penguin Randomhouse SA for review, this has in no way affected my opinion.  


10 thoughts on “One Of Us Is Lying // Gossip Girl meets Pretty Little Liars

    1. Thanks so much Meggy 🌸
      The first half of the book is really great and I was totally on the edge of my seat, but the mental illness thing just didn’t sit well with me!


  1. I’ve seen so much buzz about this book, but your spoiler-free review has definitely helped me understand it a lot better! Since I work at a bookstore, people have been constantly asking if this book is a good one to pick up. I personally think it gives a 13 Reasons Why type of vibe which is probably why everyone is so into it right now. Great review 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Katie 🌸
      I’d say 13 Reasons Why portrays suicide and rape in more detail. But I guess it can be compared to it, especially with a character dying and all the gossip. I’m happy my review helped you 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I really want to pick this up because I adore Gossip Girl and the first few seasons of PLL, and the blurb sounds so fascinating but I don’t want to get disappointed if the ending was lack lustered. Plus, not a fan of books that don’t handle mental illness’ the way it should be handled. Other than that I loved reading your thoughts on this book, great review btw!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much 🌸
      The first half of the book is really good and it totally had me on the edge of my seat but then the twist was just a let down. I’ve only seen a few people complain about the mental illness representation so I think it would be best to decide whether to read it or not 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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