Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 1422
A Good Way to Be Confused
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Jessica Warman's Beautiful Lies came out in August, and I haven't heard much about it since. Which I'm sure is my own fault, though I'd like to blame the unremarkable cover design.

The novel tells the story of two identical twin sisters, Rachel and Alice, so uniquely alike that they share an almost psychic bond. When one sister disappears at an autumn fair, the other knows that something is deeply wrong, even though no one will take her seriously. Alice has run away before, after all. They will take it seriously in the morning.

When the morning comes, her sister's only proof that something really is terribly wrong is the wound she finds on her own head, her two black eyes, and the increasingly disturbing turns of her own mind. No one will believe that she's carrying her sister's wounds, but if they don't believe her, they'll never find her.

The novel tells a number of stories at once - the mystery of a missing girl, the bond between two sisters, and the devolutions of a fragile mind. It's a perfect example of an unreliable narrator that you want to follow whether you trust her or not.

There are so many twists and turns in Beautiful Lies that it's hard to write about without giving something away. Normally the first third-to-half of a book's reveals are somewhat fair game, but with this one, it would just be wrong. Which is why I'd be very careful about reading other casual reviews before picking it up.

I haven't read many teen thrillers since I was actually a teen, so I'm not sure what to compare this to. If you need one reason to read this, it would be for the secondary characters. Rachel and Alice are a fascinating center, but their family and friends are just as interesting - most of them deserving whole books all on their own. You should read this, but only if you don't mind being confused, panicked, and occasionally disturbed every now and then. Because it will do that to you.
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