Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 4713
Whirlwind Tale of Revenge & Romance!
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
A whirlwind tale of revenge and romance, Lies Beneath is the gripping tale of Calder White - a boy looking for revenge for the death of his mother, who finds forgiveness and love in the arms of the daughter of the man he's sworn to kill.

I absolutely loved reading from a male PoV - it was a refreshing change and definitely added to my ability to really enjoy this book. Calder White is arrogant, blunt and completely unfamiliar with how to properly converse with humans. Having spent most of his life using his powers of persuasion to lure unsuspecting humans into the water, he's completely out of touch with how to hold a proper conversation. Being tasked with woo-ing Jason Hancock's daughter, Calder figures Lily will easily succumb to his hypnotic ways and he'll finally be able to seek his revenge and gain his freedom. Unfortunately for Calder, Lily seems almost immune to his regular tactics, and he begins to realize it's going to take a lot more then a few witty one-liners to gain her affections.

I loved watching Calder try to figure out Lily! She frustrated him to no end and her ability to reject his imposition on her mind had him stumbling for what to say. I enjoyed watching him squirm under her observant gaze as he tried to explain why he was suddenly everywhere she went, and I liked that Lily admitted that he made her nervous, rather then having her fall inexplicably and instantaneously in love with him. His constant watch over Lily went from creepy-serial killer-ish to creepy-stalkerish to kind of romantic (but still slightly creepy) and I loved watching him struggle with his growing emotions that he found both foreign and confusing. His erratic behaviour would have been enough to cause me concern, and Lily's willingness to forgive his transgressions was a little strange. Then again, if he was the only person who might be able to answer my questions, I might be more willing to turn a blind eye to his weird behaviour.

I loved Lily. She's so different from any other female YA character that I've ever read about! She's a little quirky, choosing to dress how she thinks the poets of the Victorian era would dress now if they were still alive, and she has a healthy amount of fear for strangers. Knowing that something wasn't quite normal with Calder didn't have Lily jumping in to his waiting arms - it had her keeping him at a safe distance until his persistence (and slight charm) slowly broke down her defences. She stuck to her beliefs, even though similar beliefs had her grandfather deemed insane by the rest of the family, and she was smart enough to put together the pieces for herself.

I would have liked to see more from Calder's sisters. Dark, twisted and fascinatingly creepy, I was surprised by how little they made an appearance. And while I understood Calder's rationale behind getting close to Jason's daughter in order to get close to him, I was also surprised by how little interaction there was between Calder and Jason. After being unable to shake his hand, I figured Calder would admit they needed to come up with a different plan because he couldn't stomach to be near Jason. It just seemed like a lot of unnecessary work, especially when an impulsive decision by one of Calder's sisters towards the end accomplished in one moment what Calder had spent weeks trying for. I disliked Calder's breakdown at the end - it was poorly explained and I didn't understand why he was punishing himself that way - but it didn't last too long, so it's not a huge complaint.

A strong male protagonist, complimented by an eerily dangerous atmosphere makes Lies Beneath a suspenseful and fast-paced read. Calder's inexperience with humans makes his moments of socially unaccepted behaviours endearing, and his emotional torment over where his loyalties laid was heartbreaking.
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