One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus is a Young Adult book about four high school students thrown together in detention, only to have one of them die.
Five high students walk into detention; four walk out alive. When Simon, the creator of the scandalous gossip app at Bayview High called “About That” dies during detention, he leaves behind a suicide note with a final post revealing all of his classmates’ deepest secrets which is was going to published on its app. These secrets could potentially destroy all of their lives. Instantly, the four of them are the prime suspects in Simon's murder, making them outcasts among their classmates, the majority of whom despised Simon until he died, is now consider as a tragic figure.
The police suspect it was murder and have their eyes on Bronwyn, Addy, Nate and Cooper—the Superficial Four in Simon’s eyes —as suspects. But as they investigate the mystery surrounding Simon’s death, they discover that everyone has something to hide and no one can be trusted.
The character Simon was a hated blogger and he did not have any friends and most people at school wanted him dead, among them are the “Four” - the popular kids at school. Each character has a different personality type: Bronwyn is the straight-a student, Nate is an athlete on scholarship for basketball and for which Simon was collecting evidence to derail his athletic career so that he could take over as captain of the team. Then you have Addison who is an aspiring singer from an affluent family whose life hinges on her reputation being intact as she wants to become the home queen and Cooper is a player who is an all-star.
Each character’s story is told from their perspective in distinct chapters titled by their name with also letters sent by Simon to them attached at the end of each chapter revealing more disturbing details about their lives he had been privy to via his gossip app YOLO (You Only Live Once).
Unexpectedly, the four students who had never met before are thrown together. Each claims innocence—but is one of them telling the truth, or did someone else get involved? And how could they, when there were only five of them in the classroom that day? Can they clear their names and reclaim their lives?
One of Us is lying got recognition and awards in the following forum:
- New York Times bestseller for 129 weeks
- ABA IndieBound bestseller
- USA Today bestseller
- A New York Public Library's Best Book for Teens selection
- A YALSA 2018 Teens’ Top Ten selection
- A YALSA 2018 Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers
- An Entertainment Weekly Best YA Book of the Year selection
- A PopCrush Best Young Adult Book of the Year selection
- A BuzzFeed Best YA Book of the Year selection
Karen McManus did an outstanding job with this book , the plot is thrilling and interesting one . She basically took most of the stereotypical high school stereotypes and gave them a little more depth than you'd expect. The Compelling part of this book is the characters and their flaws.
If you like One Of Us Is Lying try reading: We Were Liars by E Lockhart (2014), Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (2017), or Sadie by Courtney Summers (2018). All are stand-alone books with unreliable narrators and twist endings!
One Of Us Is Lying is gaining popularity again, as the series recently premiered on Peacock on October 7, 2021, to generally positive reviews from critics. The series was renewed for a second season in January 2022. The series is now available for Streaming on Netflix.
The One of Us is Lying sequel, with a brand new mystery to solve at Bayview High, - One of Us is Next - that came out in 2020. One of Us is Back - the third One of Us is Lying book, is due out in 2023.