ARC REVIEW: Lies You Never Told Me by Jennifer Donaldson (May 2018)

But the truth is so much simpler, and so much more complicated.

Synopsis: Gabe and Elyse have never met. But they both have something to hide. Gabe and Elyse both make the mistake of falling for the wrong person, and falling hard. Told in parallel narratives, this twisty, shocking story shows how one bad choice can lead to a spiral of unforeseen consequences that not everyone will survive.

To be published on May 29, 2018 by Razorbill

Print ARC provided by publisher through BookishFirst

Genres: YA Mystery & Suspense, YA Romance

Themes: abusive relationships, lies, sex with a minor, elopement, running away, regret, starting over, addiction, parenting, acting, Shakespeare

Amazon* / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository

*As an Amazon Associate, I get a mini % of sales price for any item you purchase through my link, thank you! ^_^

Goodreads

Simply told – the lies they never told me? Well, it’s that this was going to be more predictable than the little murder-mystery I found while reading an upcoming YA scifi, This Splintered Silence or that mysterious poet in the upcoming YA contemporary romance, Kiss CollectorSo for a thriller’s predictability level, that’s pretty bad.

It was that “shocking ending” promised in the promo and the ARC foreword that set my standards really high. I don’t quite remember the exact wording anymore, but I was super excited going into this.

At the time, I was impressed with myself, when I thought I only guessed part of the twist less than halfway through. But then as the novel approached the climax, I just kept guessing little bits and pieces, found lots of obvious lying around within the text. But yet, I convinced myself – oh, I bet the author is trying to misguide me here only to throw that shocker in the end. So needless to say, until I turned that last page, I was still expecting that so-called “shocking ending” which is only ever THE satisfying solution to a suspenseful read. Alas, I saw all of it coming. EVERYTHING. And I didn’t know who to blame. I don’t even read that much thriller…

…life is messy, and weird, and hard, and no one story is the absolute truth.

On a positive note, I thought it was fun to read the parallel POVs and neither Gabe nor Elyse was particularly irritating, so that’s a plus. Also, I did particularly enjoy the Romeo & Juliet rehearsal scenes – oh to parse Shakespeare’s play and characters, what joy!

Overall, for anyone looking for a thriller that will keep you guessing, I wouldn’t particularly recommend this – instead I’ll suggest you read Bad Girls with Perfect Faces (I didn’t even know I was supposed to be guessing, so I never saw the twist coming, read it in one sitting, too!) or One of Us Is Lying (I guessed this before the big reveal, but it kept me guessing anyway! I was never 100% sure throughout).

The tl;dr version: find something else to read 🙂

Thank you Penguin Publishing Group for my review copy!

Thanks for taking the time to read my review 😉 you’re always appreciated!

Shop for similar reads: 

When you read mystery / suspense / thrillers, do you try to guess the twist? Can you usually guess it?

Can you recommend any great similar reads?

Sincerely Peachy (1)

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