Family of Liars

by E. Lockhart | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 9780593485859 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingGoryDetailswing of Nashua, New Hampshire USA on 2/4/2023
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!
1 journaler for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingGoryDetailswing from Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Saturday, February 4, 2023
I found this hardcover in this Little Free Library in Nashua NH while dropping off some books of my own, and nabbed it for another release copy. I enjoyed We Were Liars, and was interested in this prequel. [Note: this book does contain some spoilers re the previous book, so it's best to read that one first if you dislike having plot-twists spoiled. I'll try to avoid any spoilers in my own comments.]

This book deals with the early life of the three sisters whose children are the central characters in We Were Liars, from the viewpoint of Carrie - who admits up front that she has been a liar all her life, adding "it's not uncommon in our family". You have been warned!

The story opens in the present day, with an older Carrie commenting on why she's now recalling a particularly traumatic summer in her 17th year - the year after the death by drowning of her 10-year-old sister Rosemary, which only Carrie seems to think about at all. When she brings it up to her sisters Penny and Bess they say it's too sad to think about and push her to change topics - and the girls' parents never speak of Rosemary at all. When they return to the family's private island Carrie finds that all of Rosemary's belongings - beloved stuffed animals and favorite books included - have been removed from her old room. Is this family determined to erase her memory entirely? Much of this story hinges on Carrie's reactions to this, and her assumptions about how her family is dealing with it - with a couple of kickers: Carrie has been self-medicating with prescription meds stolen from her father and, when she can get it, booze; and she's begun to see Rosemary, who appears out of nowhere claiming she just "wakes up" sometimes and needs to be with Carrie. [The family in general seems prone to migraines and/or substance-abuse - in addition to a truly superpowered level of denial - though only Carrie and, briefly, her mother, seem able to see Rosemary at all. An actual ghost or a hallucination?]

As the summer unfolds there are charming-sounding family gatherings - including Carrie's best friend and cousin Yardley, who's there with her father (the other girls' uncle) and her young brother Tomkin; Penny's friend Erin; and three teen boys as surprise guests - Yardley's boyfriend George and his pals Major and Pfeff. This all leads to stress - and fun - and hints of romance... and, eventually, a profound betrayal and a sudden crime, and yet more secrets for this very private family to keep. Can't say a lot more without spoilers, but while there were some dramatic episodes here, I didn't find the "but I was lying" reveal to be all that interesting. The characters' flaws and relationships did hold my interest, though I wished that the entire lot of them could have had access to a really good therapist way early in the story {wry grin}. Overall there's a theme of family going to great lengths to protect family - but, too often, at the cost of actually dealing with painful truths, which may come back to bite them down the line.

Released 1 mo ago (2/6/2023 UTC) at Little Free Library, 248 Main St. in North Chelmsford, Massachusetts USA


I left this book in this new-to-me Little Free Library; hope someone enjoys it!

[See other recent releases in MA here.]

Are you sure you want to delete this item? It cannot be undone.